The Baroque Era
Composers: Bach, Handel, Vivaldi
- Melodies with lots of ornamentation/trills.
- Patterns of notes used in sequences (same rhythm, at a lower/higher pitch).
- Strong bassline (cello/bassoon) and chords (harpsichord/organ/lute). These are the continuo - they played all the time.
- Orchestra - mainly strings.
- NO pianos, clarinets or saxophones
- Lots of scales/broken chords
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The Classical Era
Composers: Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven
- Very structural phrasing
- Clear melody and accompaniment
- Orchestra sections - woodwind, brass, percussion (usually kettle drums) and strings.
- New instruments - piano and clarinet
- Valves in brass instruments gave them a bigger range of notes.
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The Romantic Era
Composers: Mendelssohn, Wagner, Tchaikowsky
- Long 'unending' melodies
- Wider range of notes
- Longer phrases - not so many cadences
- More 'colourful' chords - chromatic harmony used because composers enjoyed the sounds, rather than fitting them to a conventional pattern
- More variety in timbres
- Much wider range in dynamics - greater detail helping emotional feelings
- Detailed performance directions
- Larger instrumental and choral forces
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