Musical Styles In The Western Era: 1600-1899

Baroque, Classical and Romantic Era features

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  • Created by: nyuu-chan
  • Created on: 23-04-09 20:43


The Baroque Era

Dates: 1600-1730

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

Dates: 1730-1830

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

Dates: 1830-1899

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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