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Baroque Music

Baroque music refers to music from the period from the beginning of the 17th century to the middle of the 18th century (1750, death of Bach). The two main countries in which it developed are Italy and France, but Baroque music is often considered to have culminated in Germany with Johann Sebastian Bach. This music, which gave way to the music of the classical period, was neglected for many years, before being partially rediscovered in the 19th century (basically, we were re-interested in Bach), and completely restored. in the place it deserves in the middle of the 20th century.

The term baroque comes from the Portuguese Barocco which means “irregular pearl”; this term was given a posteriori, as opposed to the classicism in which we then found ourselves; the Baroque style, which affects all the artistic fields of this period, is characterized by movement, excess, oppositions… all this remaining however well framed – it is not a question of doing anything either!

In music more specifically, Baroque is characterized by the use of counterpoint (the melodies intertwine, intertwine) and more and more harmony (conversely, the emphasis is on chords, where the melodies are born). One of the main features of Baroque music is the presence of a basso continuo: a bass line played along a piece by one or more bass instruments (cellos, viola, double bass, etc.). Baroque music is a music of contrasts: low/high, dark/light (major/minor chords, etc.). Finally, it is very codified music, which makes it more difficult to distinguish between two Baroque composers than two Classical or Romantic composers, for example.

The Baroque musical period is very fertile in terms of musical forms: the creation of the opera, the concerto, the oratorio, the sonata… It is finally a period of great progress with regard to the development of the theory musical.

In bulk, here are some great Baroque composers: Bach, Vivaldi, Handel, Pachelbel, Albinoni, Monteverdi, Telemann, Couperin, Lully, Charpentier, Rameau…

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