Chapter 8

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University of Toronto St. George
Greg Johnston

Sacred Music during the Reformation Chapter 8 Reformation: theological dispute against Catholic Church and Roman spiritual leadership Bible's message: faith-based justification contrafactum: new German texts set to old hymns choral/Kirchenlied: Lutheran strophic congregational singing salter: Calvinist repeating simple rhymed metrical translations set to new melodies or pop tunes plainchant no musical elaboration; focussed worship some are predestined for salvation, others damnation Church of England subbed English words for Latin new Latin motets and masses, new English forms for service full textures, harmonies, contrasting voice groups melismatic expressivity Catholic Reformation, Counter-Reformation: reaffirm sacred polyphony's beauty, power to move emotions Council of Trent: general banning of Church's irreverent stains in music performance MUSIC OF THE REFORMATION IN GERMANY Martin Luther: humanistic reasoning explains Bible's misinterpretation by Catholic church German Mass: like Roman Mass by replaced Proper & Ordinary w/ German hymns and chorales -chorale: basis for Lutheran church music rhyming text, simple tune for congregation newly-composed or adapted from Latin chants, secular and devotional songs polyphonic chorale: choir alternates with congregation, w/o then w/accomp, on organ Palestrina: gracefully phrased polyphony, strategic text declamation, no chromaticism, logic musical development through motives The Long 17th c taly: emotional expression at core of Baroque aesthetic via movement theory of the affections: emotions controlled by bodily spirits "humours" were stimulated by 5 senses art should move emotions, conjure soul's passions contrapuntal "imperfections" in lieu of emotional expressivity: dissonances, unexpected progressions prima/seconda pratica: importance of text over music, or vice-versa? order & control: unifying ostinato basses, harmonic patterns, recurring tutti sections disorder and freedom: improve toccatas, contrasting sections into separate movements rhythm is either very free (vocal recitative and improv solo instrumental) or very metric (dances) active bass lines and harmonic motion homophonic melody, unobtrusive harmonies, inner voices subordinated emphasis on performer and performance, not composition improvisation, embellishment to enhance music's affective powers
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