History IV – January 17 2013
Characteristics of 19 – Century music
1. Basic elements of the 18 century but creates new affects. Search for originality. Self-
expression ties into romanticism. Increased emphasis on sonority. Exploring the
instruments and their timbers, and breaking away from the regular accompaniment
patterns. Orchestration grows. Storytelling (programmatic effects)..
a. Berlioz – treatise on orchestration
2. Increasingly chromatic harmony, applied dominance and sixth chords. Chromatics is
blurring and disrupting the regular harmonic progressions.
3. Freer treatment of dissonance. Delayed resolutions. Dissonance is introduced without
proper rules. Blurs the progressions
4. Increasingly remote key relationships. Modal mixture. (Classical movement: fifth
relations) More commonly is relationship by thirds. Beethoven uses it traditionally.
a. Modal mixture: goes from C Major goes to c minor. Using the key signature of the
minor you can move to e-flat major. C→ E-flat minor.
5. Increasing emphasis on melody. Cadences in classical are conventional I6 – II6/5 – V –
C6/4 – V – I. Romantic composers pushed away from conventional cadences. Endless
melody (Wagner): every note in the melody means something. Larger units.
6. Beginning a piece with intense material that has a relationship with the rest of the piece
and to develop it. Unusual openings.
7. Irrational and throwing away formulas.
8. Use of ambiguity (form and harmony). Tonality by expression but not necessarily
touching on the tonic (Dichterliebe, op.48). Diminished seventh can move either way by
leading tone. German augmented sixth chords prepare the dominant. Using chords with
a double sword. Tchescofsky – Romeo and Juliet.
Change in view on instrumental music:
• During Haydn and Mozart instrumental music wasn’t viewed highly. Not as highly as
vocal music because it was music without text. Plato says that good music had text
(great Greek plays).
• The symphony challenges the old ideas, and changes the attitudes. More effective then
vocal music because it is more powerful than words, beyond the world.
• Beethoven is notable character. 5 symphony Beethoven gives man a glimpse of the
world beyond music, infinite, supernatural and longing (Romantic ideal).
• Instrumental music is suddenly the most powerful form of music because it is the will in
the world. An Chloë – by Mozart
• Alberti base
• Clear to what the tonic is
• Clearly an introduction
• Periodic melody
Dichterliebe, Op. 48 – S