Musical Musings

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Heading Back to Baroque

Monday, July 26, 2021 by Paula Augustine | Student Article

Heading Back to Baroque

When Music was Fancy

Rubens Isabella Painting


We will be listening to music of composers of the Baroque time period, from 1600-1750. This was before the United States was a nation, but during the time people were exploring and colonizing these new America's. Think of a fancy dress. What makes it fancy? Under all the embellishments added like fancy lace, or big collars, or other added sewing the dress would be plain. But, by adding embellishments it makes it fancy. [The picture is from the 1600's the painter Peter Paul Ruebens painted a portrait of himself and his first wife Isabella.]

Just like fancy clothes we can make music fancy by adding embellishments called ornamentation. Many of you have played a trill, or a mordent or a turn. These ornaments simply add more notes to the melody line to make it fancy.

This is a great short overview of the Baroque Period. Can you find some of the different instruments: The Lute looks like a very large guitar. Watch how the harpsichord plays. Can you name a composer from the Baroque time period?


Next Month we will learn about the composer Pachabel from the Baroque time period. Remember to get your Baroque Booklet to become a Baroque Superstar this semester and earn a medal.