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Lecture 15

MUSIC 140A Lecture Notes - Lecture 15: Gigue, Figured Bass, Twelve Concerti Grossi, Op. 6 (Corelli)

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Robert W Inter

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CHAPTER 7: Instrumental Music (cont.)
Concerto Grosso
“Concerto” originally applied to both vocal and instrumental music
Late 17th century: meant purely instrumental work
Concerto grosso
Most important form of ensemble music in late 17th century
“Large consort group,” unlike small chamber group
Standardized into 3 movements: Fast-Slow-Fast
Corelli’s 12 Concerto Grossi
Interplay between concerto grosso and concertino
String sonorities, new system of tonality
Usually composed for festive services in church
Later expanded to private and amateur orchestras
Large group = tutti (all)
Ripieno = full
Work written for full ensemble
Arcangelo Corelli (1653-1713)
Born near Ravenna, Italy
Not from poor family
Father of orchestra string sound
Common practice tonality
Most influential composer of late 17th century
Studied violin and composition in Bologna
1676: met with Roman musicians
Supported by Cardinal Pamphili, most important patron
Queen Christina of Sweden, secular leader
Stayed in Rome most of his life
Only 6 opuses of his survive, most of them are sonatas and trio sonatas
12 concerti grossi, for strings, prob his best works
Usually work was created for specific occasion, then quickly forgotten
publication was very significant
Master of string sonorities
Fifth based tonality
Corelli: Concerto Grosso in F Major, Op. 6, No. 2 (1712)
Two main types of concerti grossi:
1. 4-6 movements, alternating slow and fast movements
Free arrangement
Each movement about 2-3 min
2. 5-6 movements, 2-4 of them have dances that were popular in Baroque time:
Giga (gigue)
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