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Lecture

Rhythm


Department
Music
Course Code
MUS111H1
Professor
Joshua Pilzer

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MUS110H1 Lecture 1 - Rhythm 10-12-07 2:05 AM
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Main Stylistic Eras of Western Music
Middle Ages (Medieval): ca. 500 ca. 1400
o Main music found in the Church (the literate people were
there)
Renaissance: ca. 1400 ca. 1600
o “rebirthtime (The Church and nobility lost some authority
and common folk discovered they might have talent)
Baroque: ca. 1600 ca. 1750
o Dramatic period (opera, Bach, Vivaldi, raised level of
emotion)
Classical: ca. 1750 ca. 1800
o Music very removed, carefully organized, balanced (Mozart,
young Beethoven)
19th Century: ca. 1800 ca. 1899
20th Century: ca. 1900 ca. 1999
Rhythm
Is the organization of events in time
The grouping of musical sounds, principally by means of duration
and stress
What do we listen for?
o Levels of rhythmic activity high or low?
o Layers of rhythmic activity same or different levels of
activity?
! An orchestra is a good example of this
o Do we hear recurrent patterns? More than one recurrent
pattern? Recurrent patterns in multiple layers of activity?
Medieval
i.e. Gregorian Chant, Kyrie (ca. 10th century)
very proportioned
very balanced
sense of peacefulness
very rhythmically laid back, non-metric music
www.notesolution.com

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Hoquet or Hocket: derived from the Latin word for hiccup’. A
Stylistic device characterized by the distribution of a melodic line
between two voices in such a way that as one sounds, the other is
silent
o i.e. Guillaume De Machaut, Mass of Our lady, Kyrie (CA.
1360)
Renaissance
i.e. Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Agnus Dei of the Pope Marcellus
(1562)
rhythmically or moderately active
longer note values often tend to be followed by shorter note values
rarely are there sudden changes in the levels of rhythmic activity
(causes sense of peacefulness)
rhythmic activity is most often the same in all parts
Baroque & Classical
Recitative: a style of text setting that imitates and emphasizes the
natural inflections, rhythms, and syntax of speech
o i.e. Henry Purcell, Dido and Auneas (1689). Recitative “Thy
hand, Belinda!
frequent use of motivic rhythmic patterns. A “motive(or “motif) is
a short rhythmic, melodic or harmonic idea, or a combination of all
three
o i.e. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Symphony No 40 in G Minor
(1788), Kyrie
! How does Mozart use rhythm to achieve high levels of
energy in his music?
" Repetition of a note
19th Century
i.e. Bedrich Smetana, “The Moldaufrom Ma Vlast (1872-74)
o many many rhythmic layers of activity
Romantic music of the 19th century often calls on all rhythmic
devices to maintain interest and to underscore the composers
personal style and musical language
www.notesolution.com
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