10 Baroque - Introduction, Opera

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The Baroque Era: 1600 – 1750 Introduction: The Long Seventeenth Century

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Page 1: 10 Baroque - Introduction, Opera

The Baroque Era: 1600 – 1750 Introduction:The Long SeventeenthCentury

Page 2: 10 Baroque - Introduction, Opera

• Scientific revolution

• Colonialism

• Capitalism

• Patronage

Europe: Seventeenth Century

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Baroque Era: 1600–1750

Original meaning: “abnormal,” “bizarre,” “grotesque”

flamboyant, theatrical, expressive tendencies

diversity of stylesArtemisia Gentileschi, ca. 1620, Judith Slaying Holofernes

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From Renaissance to Baroque…

Drama• Literature

Shakespeare, Milton, Cervantes

• Art/architecture Bernini

Ecstasy of St. Teresa, 1647 – 1652

• the affections emotion, humour, passion opera sensory, physical,

psychological

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The Musical Baroque

conservatives vs. innovators• prima pratica v. seconda pratica

Instrumental music• ostinato basses• harmonic patterns • recurring tutti sections

Order v. Disorder – dialectic of control/freedom

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The Musical Baroque (cont’d)

Concertato medium

Harmony • Chords/dissonance• Chromaticism• from modal tonal

Homophonic textures• melody + bassline

(firm, figured, ground, thoroughbass)

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The Musical Baroque (cont’d) Italian trends dominate

• basso continuo (Caccini, Vedrò ‘l mio sol NAWM 72)

• unprepared dissonances• solo voice (florid) + bass line

(firm, figured)• recitative

Regular, flexible rhythms• barlines to mark measures

Homophonic textures• melody + bassline (firm,

figured, ground, thoroughbass)

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Forerunners of Opera music and drama – Ancient

Greece• choruses, principal lyric

speeches• Renaissance plays: songs,

offstage music Renaissance antecedents

• intermedio, pastoral drama, Greek tragedy

Florentine Camerata (1570s)• academy, performance,

discussion (ancient v. modern)

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The First Operas

Recreate ancient genre in modern form• Bardi in Rome, 1592• Peri and Rinuccini’s Dafne

(1598) pastoral poem, staged drama,

sung throughout

L’Euridice, 1600• NAWM 73 – recitative style,

dialogue Monteverdi’s Orfeo (1607)

• NAWM 74d, ‘‘Tu se’ morta’’

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“Tu se’ morta” (NAWM 74d)

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Opera in Rome and Venice

Rome: center for opera, 1620s• subjects : lives of saints, episodes from Italian epics,

comedy• spectacular stage effects • recitative and aria

recitatives: speechlike arias: melodious, strophic

• castrati women prohibited from stage in Rome female roles sung by castrati

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Opera in Rome and Venice (cont’d)

Venice: • 1637 first public opera

house, Teatro San Cassiano

• audience diversity supported by rich merchants wealthiest families rented

boxes• L’incoronazione di

Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea), 1643