6.19 Chapter Summary

As we have seen, nineteenth-century music was diverse and pervasive. Music was a part of everyday life, as middle class children received music education and as concerts became important social events across social strata. Aesthetic movements of Romanticism, Realism, Exoticism, and cultural nationalism shaped musical styles. Composers such as Franz Schubert, Felix and Fanny Mendelssohn, Robert and Clara Schumann, Fryderyk Chopin, Franz Liszt, Hector Berlioz, Johannes Brahms, Bedřich Smetana, Antonín Dvořák, John Philip Sousa, Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Giuseppe Verdi, and Richard Wagner wrote eclectic music across German, French, Italian, Czech, Polish, American, and Russian lands. Many of them continued with genres developed in the Baroque and classical periods, such as the concerto, symphony, opera, and oratorio, while others forged new paths, especially as music and poetry, drama, and visual art interacted in such new genres as the art song, piano character piece, program symphony, symphonic poem, and music drama, or opera. Despite the larger performing forces that were available, composers continued to privilege singable melodies, even if they were much more chromatic than before. These transformations of musical form and harmony continued into the early twentieth century as musicians sought to be more modern than ever before and, in so doing, questioned the very foundations basic to music of the previous two centuries.

6.20 Glossary

Art song
a composition setting a poem to music, generally for one solo voice and piano accompaniment; in German, a Lied
Chamber music
music—such as art songs, piano character pieces, and string quartets—primarily performed in small performing spaces, often for personal entertainment
use of "colorful," dissonant pitches, that are not included in the key of the composition
a composition for a soloist or a group of soloists and an orchestra, generally in three movements with fast, slow, and fast tempos, respectively
The person who leads an orchestra
a sustained pitch or pitches often found in music of the middle ages or earlier and in folk music
Idée fixe
a famous melody that appears in all five movements of Berlioz's Symphonie fantastique to represent the beloved from the program
"guiding motive" associated with a specific character, theme, or locale in a music drama, and first associated with the music of Richard Wagner
a Polish dance in triple time, with emphasis on beat 2
pride in one's nation or cultural identity, often expressed in art, literature, and music
a drama almost entirely sung to orchestral accompaniment, with accompanying costumes and staging
Plagal cadence
ending of a composition that consists of a IV chord moving to a I chord and most often associated with church music
Program music
instrumental music intended to represent a something extra musical such as a poem, narrative, drama, or picture, or the ideas, images, or sounds therein
Program symphony
program music in the form of a multi-movement composition for orchestra
the momentary speeding up or slowing down of the tempo within a melody line, literally "robbing" time from one note to give to another
Scena ed aria
nineteenth-century operatic combination of a recitative ("scena") plus aria; here the aria generally has two parts, a slower cantabile and a faster cabaletta
composition for a solo instrument or an instrument with piano accompaniment, generally in three movements with fast, slow, and fast tempos, respectively
Sonata form
a form often found in the first and last movements of sonatas, symphonies, and string quartets, consisting of three parts – exposition, development, and recapitulation
Song cycle
a collection of art songs, unified by poet, narrative, musical style, or composer
String quartet
performing ensemble consisting of two violinists, one violinist, and one cellist that plays compositions called string quartets, compositions generally in four movements
a composition that uses the repetition of the same music ("strophes") for successive texts
Symphonic poem
program music in the form of a single-movement composition for orchestra; sometimes called a tone poem
multi-movement composition for orchestra, often in four movements
Ternary form
describes a musical composition in three parts, most often featurings two similar sections, separated by a contrasting section and represented by the letters A – B – A.
a movement or composition consisting of new music throughout, without repetition of internal sections