Lesson 7 THE CLASSIC PERIOD Objectives: After doing though this lesson you should be able to; 1. discover the contributions of great composer during classical period. 2. analyze the importance of their contribution. 3. show interests to their contribution in music. NEXT CONTENTS PREVIOUS 4 5 6 Lesson 8 9
The period between 1750 and 1820 is referred to as the classic period. The term classic is borrowed from a period in ancient Greece when cut structure was emphasized and emotional display was frowned upon. Composers of this period showed concern for form specially the sonata form. Considerable attention was paid to dynamic marking (loud and soft, crescendo and diminuendo). It was also during this period that the symphony developed to its fullest and the piano, then a new instrument began to capture the interest of the composers.
The four most outstanding composers of this period were: Christopher Willibald Gluck, Franz Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig Van Beethoven .
Gluck was the first great composer to interest himself in the reform and development of the opera. He was born in Austria but he was educated in Italy and Paris, and his name is associated with the rise of French opera. His philosophy as written in the preface of this opera alceste was “Simplicity and truth are the sole principles of the beautiful art.” This was very much in to contrast the superficialities of the operas of his days. His thirty operas some the best known are Orfeo, Iphigenie en Tauride and Alceste. To this day these are still performed.
Franz Joseph Haydn, affectionately called “Papa Haydn” is considered the father of the SONATA. It was he who divided the symphony into four divisions and clarified the outlines of the sonata form. Most of this early life was spent in Vienna where he directed music for court Esterhazy the greatest art patron of his time. The Esterhazy family maintained one of the most splendid courts in all Europe and this affords him to work the best singers and instruments of the period.
Haydn will long remembered for his outstanding church music, string, quartets famous oratories like the “The Creation” and twelve symphonies which he composed in England. The Surprise Symphony is one of them.
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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (The Wonder Child) 1756-1791
Mozart was one of the most outstanding musical geniuses that over loved. At the age of four, he was not only reading but making up tunes of his own.
At age of six, he and his sister Nannerl played before kings and queens and royal families all over Europe and England.
Mozart considered him primarily an opera composer though his compositions covered a wide range including sonatas, quartets and symphonies. His most famous opera are “The Marriage of Figaro,” “Don Giovannani” a mass for the dead.
Mozart died very poor and nobody knew just where he was buried but his music possesses the simplicity, naiveté, grace, and charm all hearers love even to this day.