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Questions tagged [baroque-period]

A time period in Western art music spanning between 1600-1760 CE, approximately.

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History of "white keys" and "black keys" as idiom

When explaining music theory in layman's terms, it's common to refer to "white keys" and "black keys" and take for granted that everyone knows what a piano looks like. But ...
the-baby-is-you's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
265 views

Figured Bass Standalone Accidentals

I'm wondering whether or not standalone accidentals always imply 3rds in figured bass notation. Is (5)(♭)(8) the same as (5)(3♭)(8)? Is (9)(♮) the same as (9)(3)? Can a figure 3 always be inserted ...
hello's user avatar
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4 answers
156 views

Can I play the BWV 863 prelude like this?

So, I'm learning the prelude and fugue in G-sharp minor from the Well-Tempered Clavier I (BWV 863). The prelude goes like this (see full score here): And I would like to play it like this: As you ...
Lava's user avatar
  • 119
9 votes
5 answers
932 views

Inconsistent number of beats per measure

This perhaps just betrays my ignorance, but I don't understand why in the attached piece, in 3/4 time, certain bars, such as 10 and 12, have 6 instead of 3 quarter notes, with no change in the time ...
z8080's user avatar
  • 599
3 votes
2 answers
87 views

Three consecutive dissonances in verset fugue

I've been playing from a collection of versets (fugues) by Gottlieb Muffat. https://imslp.org/wiki/72_Versetl_sammt_12_Toccaten_(Muffat%2C_Gottlieb) The versets are arranged by the old Church tones ...
Michael Curtis's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
288 views

Pile up of ornaments in J.S.Bach's BWV 935

These are bars 19-23 in J.S. Bach's BWV 935, from the Sechs kleine Präludien für Anfänger auf dem Klavier: Can anyone spell out for me what should be played for that E in bar 23 adorned with a grace ...
Mariano Suárez-Álvarez's user avatar
11 votes
2 answers
490 views

Accidentals and ornaments

These are the first two bars of J. S. Bach's Fughetta in c-moll (BWV 961) as edited by Henle. Does the second trillo in the second bar start on B flat, so that it cancels the natural on the previous ...
Mariano Suárez-Álvarez's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
51 views

How do I play this rhythm? [duplicate]

I am trying to play the Largo from Vivaldi's Concerto for Flautino in C Major (RV 443), but I am not sure how to time this passage in measure 4: This piece is in 12/8 time, but the notes in this ...
casvaart's user avatar
  • 101
2 votes
2 answers
57 views

When to use sixth in continuo according to Bianciardi?

From Bianciardi's Breve Regola (http://www.bassus-generalis.org/bianciardi/bianciardi.html): "But because some notes don’t have a fifth above, a sixth is used in its place; this happens in those ...
volvo's user avatar
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1 answer
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How does one resolve the conflict between Renaissance theory of Cadences and the contradictions against it in Bach Chorales?

A level pupil. Made the mistake of learning Renaissance cadence voicing way before starting A-level harmony course. There's a conflict of interest between the cadential progressions of the renaissance ...
Ridiculable Pupil's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
226 views

Ornaments in baroque music: should be avoided in some cases?

In baroque music, often the performers add ornaments (or even more complex variations) to the written notes, mostly during a repeat. It's very common to hear them on Bach, Vivaldi, Marcello, etc... ...
Mark's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
98 views

Interpreting the repeat signs in Handel's passacaglia (HWV 432)

In the urtext edition (page 84 of the pdf) that I found on IMSLP it looks as if the first period is repeated and then... the rest of the piece, without that first period, is played twice? That doesn't ...
Liisi's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
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French-language Baroque Music Suggestions

I have found Bach's vocal works to be a fun way to supplement learning German. I am also learning French, and I have tried looking for such works with French libretto but I have been unable to find ...
PrimeNumbers's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
92 views

Rules for improvising intermediate notes in basso continuo

When realizing figured bass, passing notes in the bass are analyzed quite thoroughly in literature (e.g. The Art of Accompaniment from a Thorough Bass). However, I cannot find any information or rules ...
Tristan's user avatar
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11 votes
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626 views

Optional notes in baroque clavier score?

I'm not a keyboard player so I'm not sure what the smaller notes in this score mean. Are they optional like an ossia or something to be played on a repeat or something else?
Sprice's user avatar
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Dissonance in SWV 447

I'm a huge fan of Heinrich Schütz and in particular of the Dresdner Kammerchor's recordings of his work. This moment in bar 169 of "Vater Abraham, erbarme dich mein, SWV 447" really caught ...
eric_kernfeld's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
382 views

Syncopation in classical music [closed]

Can anyone can point me, a lay person, to good examples of syncopation in classical music? I'm also wondering if syncopation shows up at all in Baroque music. Thank you.
Rivah's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
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Baroque composing [closed]

What defines a "trio" style. As in, if I were composing a piece on the piano how do I compose it in a "trio" style
Franz Liszt's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
2k views

Is Gould playing extra notes in Bach's Toccata in C Minor, and if so, why?

In Glenn Gould's recording of Bach's Toccata in C Minor, it sounds like he modifies the melody in the the right hand to add two extra notes You can hear it here. Is this just a Gould improvisation, ...
Steve Bennett's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
91 views

Number of subject/answer entries in 16th/18th Century fugal counterexpositions

I'm studying the difference between 16th and 18th Century fugues. I've noticed something and wonder whether it is a notable trend, or just a coincidence. First, consider this fugue from Missa Dies ...
nuggethead's user avatar
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1 vote
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Can you recall the author and name of a baroque Passacaille or Chaconne which uses both the descending and the ascending tetrachord in the bass? [closed]

I happened to listen to a baroque passacaille or chaconne for strings on the air. It used both the descending and the ascending tetrachord in the ostinato bass. I wasn't able to find anything on the ...
Claudi Meneghin's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
439 views

Why was Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor (Bach) composed?

I'm doing an assignment on a baroque period composition, and I chose Violin Concerto No.1 in A minor by J.S. Bach. One of the things I need to do is explain why it was actually composed. I'm having a ...
Cohen's user avatar
  • 27
4 votes
2 answers
584 views

Did Bach call for male countertenor for the Alto solo part for his cantatas / passion oratorios?

I see a recent trend for countertenors to sing the alto parts for Bach's cantata / passion oratorios such as Maarten Engeltjes in Magnificat and Tim Mead in St. Matthew Passion. Is this recent trend ...
GratefulDisciple's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
231 views

what does continuo mean?

In the sheet music for BWV1, "Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern" the last instrument is labeled as "continuo". What does that mean?
Neins's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
440 views

When realizing a basso continuo, should the realization avoid consecutive fifths and octaves with the written parts?

Many continuo manuals (both historical sources and modern treatises) are careful to point out that a continuo realization should be contrapuntally correct, i.e., one ought to avoid parallel fifths and ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
425 views

Is partimento a good way to learn how to write a Baroque trio sonata in the style of Corelli?

Who I am: I am 16 years old and I play violin. I am a music student and I consider myself to have a very good ear and understanding of music theory. My piano-playing is however not very good. I really ...
xavier richardson's user avatar
3 votes
4 answers
305 views

A romantic era piece has a baroque era title: how does one determine the style?

J. Danbé's "Petite Gavotte" (ca. 1888) for violin and piano seems to be baroque mainly because of the title, "Gavotte", which was a common baroque dance. But I can't find any ...
naoxink's user avatar
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3 votes
3 answers
204 views

Baroque ornamentation is not consistent across editions of the same piece

Here are two versions of the Quodlibet from Bach's Goldberg Variations. As you can see in the attachments, the ornaments and the recommendations as to how to play them are exactly opposite. One shows ...
Thomas Mathew David Loeff's user avatar
19 votes
4 answers
4k views

Who was listening to Bach's compositions in his lifetime?

Who ever encountered his work? Was his music played somewhere else in Europe, or only where he lived? What strata of society had any chance of coming into contact with his music? What might be the ...
aaron's user avatar
  • 191
2 votes
1 answer
229 views

Augmented and Diminished (Fifth) Chords Baroque Notation

Hello ¿Does anybody know what is the baroque notation of Augmented & Diminished (Fifth) chords? I'm talking about of chords like this: C-E-G# & C-E-Gb I need the baroque notation, for example: ...
MgnMsc's user avatar
  • 21
5 votes
4 answers
277 views

What are the base notes that different tuning system used?

I’m trying to understand how the different tuning systems and temperaments were used from the past. Would people tune their instruments based on the key of the piece they were going to play? Is there ...
octacube's user avatar
11 votes
5 answers
1k views

Function of augmented-fifth in figured bass

What is the harmonic function of the 5+ in the figured bass in the following snippet? If I have interpreted the figuring correctly, a F♯ figured 5+ should realise the triad F♯ A C𝄪. I am confused ...
JuliaT's user avatar
  • 111
6 votes
1 answer
596 views

ornamentation in keyboard music of William Byrd

I'm working through some tunes by Byrd, and am wondering about the ornamentation, the two diagonal slashes through the note stem. As far as I can tell, we don't actually know what the composers of ...
Kevin G.'s user avatar
  • 437
0 votes
1 answer
117 views

Name of style of piece inside the G Minor BWV915 toccata of Bach?

In Bach's Toccatas for keyboard works (BWV 911-916), I would like to know if there is a name for the style of music that is sometimes put in the middle of the toccata. For example: in the G minor ...
user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
2k views

Different versions of mordents in Bach Invention No. 1 In C Major, BWV 772

I was playing Bach Invention 1 when my sister told me that I was playing it wrong. When I learnt this piece like 10 years ago, my sheet looked like this. But my sister showed me her music sheet from ...
zxcvber's user avatar
  • 153
1 vote
0 answers
100 views

Does Bach's lute partita BWV 997 Sarabande also appear as an orchestral piece?

I am practicing the Bach lute suites and I am aware that a few of them also appear as works for other instruments (BWV 1000 is also the fugue from the first violin sonata, for example). My question is ...
danieljkahn's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
334 views

How do you play a lower or upper mordent with two notes like in Bach D minor prelude 926? [duplicate]

How do you play these two mordents shown
Rene's user avatar
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6 votes
3 answers
651 views

What is the name of this notation in this example by Couperin?

Consider following excerpt from the beginning of the 2nd leçon of Couperin's Leçon des ténèbres pour le mercredi saint: As you see, it uses a rather strange notation where, for instance, a bar of 3/2 ...
Karlo's user avatar
  • 1,557
3 votes
1 answer
272 views

Why do notes not add up to the bar in this example by Couperin?

Consider following excerpt from the beginning of Couperin's Leçon des ténèbres pour le mercredi saint: I noticed that the note values don't always add up in a bar. Cases (indicated in the figure): ...
Karlo's user avatar
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9 votes
3 answers
2k views

Why did baroque music use percussion abundantly, but classical stopped?

Classical music evolved from baroque music, which in turn evolved from Renaissance music. Both baroque and even more so Renaissance make extensive use of percussion. It is certainly not new to ...
Andrew's user avatar
  • 99
6 votes
3 answers
2k views

What clef is this? (Baroque, Vivaldi)

What is this clef in Vivaldi RV281? This is the only source of the concerto is available ( at least without buying it, which is the manuscript). The piece did have a few weird clefs like an octave ...
GameworldCEO's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
428 views

Is there a functional interpretation for VIIb in La Follia?

La Follia chord peogression is usually written as: i - V7 - i - VII - III - VII - i - V7 (first eight bars) i -V7 - VII - III - VII - i,V7 - i (second eight bars) I can understand how this progression ...
Ignacio's user avatar
  • 173
5 votes
1 answer
185 views

Playing symphonies by e.g. Rachmaninoff or Mahler using string instruments with gut strings (like more Baroque styled instruments)?

I was listening to some performances from Netherland's "All of Bach" group that performs Bach works on Baroque instruments. I quite liked the sound of the strings, and I thought that it ...
D.R.'s user avatar
  • 458
2 votes
1 answer
152 views

How did baroque composers write sequences that are both imitative and modulatory?

Still working on my Bach-style fugue. And I wonder, how did composers of that time-period come up with all those sequential episodes in their fugues? I know that there is a certain standard ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
2 votes
3 answers
2k views

What differs between the rondo and its Baroque counterpart, the ritornello?

So, ever since I heard the term ritornello, I have wondered what makes it different from the rondo. So I’ve listened to several pieces in ritornello form to try to find the difference, but I couldn’t. ...
Caters's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
215 views

How do/did composers deal with very many contrapuntal voices?

A work that I've admired as long as I've known about it is Antonio Caldara's Crucifixus for 16 voices. YouTube video here. It does make me wonder how a composer like Caldara (or Thomas Tallis for ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
2 votes
2 answers
184 views

Why is the numbering scheme of the Telemann-Werke-Verzeichnis (TWV) not adopted more universally?

Telemann's works are numbered first according to genre, then, where applicable, by key (with minor keys in lowercase and major keys in uppercase), and finally (if possible) chronologically or else at ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
3 votes
3 answers
131 views

In general, do chamber musicians prefer to play from a score or from an individual part book?

Specifically in the context of Baroque trio sonatas. If part books are preferred, then what is the point of printing such works in score in the first place?
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
14 votes
4 answers
2k views

When editing/transcribing music of the Baroque period is it considered good practice to modernize key signatures and clefs?

As a hobby (and for my personal edification), it seems like a fun challenge to transcribe a few Baroque music manuscripts into a more readable form, and maybe post the results to imslp.org or ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
1 vote
2 answers
227 views

How did counterpoint, harmonic rhythm, and thoroughbass interact in the late-Baroque instrumental fugal style?

It may be considered common knowledge that frequent root changes, i.e., a fast harmonic rhythm, usually cause a piece to be perceived as being more purely "harmonic" and less polyphonic in nature. (...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
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