Musicians in History – Baroque

The Baroque Era of Music

The Baroque era occurred in the years 1600 – 1750 with composers such as Monteverdi, Corelli, Vivaldi, Handel and Bach. The baroque era is when opera began to develop and instrumental music began to expand over the popularity of vocal music. In the Baroque Era, musical forms began to take shape (repetition and contrast were very important), the orchestra began to take shape and melodic texture changed to be more polyphonic.

Here is an explanation of melodic texture changes up to the Baroque:
In the Medieval Era music was mostly vocal and what is called monophonic (like the Gregorian Chant).
This is what monophonic line sounds like:

As the Renaissance Era began, more interesting parts could be heard, but they still lined up with a melody being the most important thing. This is called homophony.
This is what a homophonic piece sounds like:

As the Baroque period developed, music became more polyphonic, where many different parts (all of equal importance) happen at the same time. (One example we use in class often is a round/canon.)
This is what a polyphonic piece sounds like:

**Pictures are borrowed from Here

For more information about the Baroque Era visit:


Arcangelo Corelli – Christmas Concert, Op. 68 performed by the Freiburger Barockorchester

Arcangelo Corelli, Sonata F Major, op.5 no.4 for recorder and basso continuo
Marco Scorticati, recorder
Davide Pozzi, harpsichord

Jean-Baptiste Lully: Te Deum, for double chorus and orchestra
Amel Brahim-Djelloul: soprano
Claire Lefilliatre: soprano
Jean-François Lombard: countertenor
Mathias Vidal: tenor
Geoffroy Buffière: bass

Le Poème Harmonique & Les Cris de Paris conducted by Vincent Dumestre

Alessandro Scarlatti: Toccata for harpsichord in G minor

Alessandro Scarlatti – Stabat Mater
Performed by: Gemma Bertagnolli soprano, Sara Mingardo contralto, Concerto Italiano Rinaldo Alessandrini
Picture by: Hans Memling – Mater Dolorosa (Galleria degli Uffizi, Firenze)

Henry Purcell (1659-1695)
Dido and Aeneas – End of Act III:
Dido´s Lament When I am laid in earth, soprano
Chorus With Drooping Wings
Simone Kermes soprano
The New Siberian Singers
Musica Aeterna, Direction Teodor Currentzis

Passacaglia from King Arthur by Henry Purcell

Hole in the Wall (Hornpipe from Henry Purcell’s ‘Abdelazer’)

Pachelbel’s Canon–the original version based on the earliest original manuscript and performed on instruments from the time of Pachelbel–listen to the authentic baroque sound!
Performed by Voices of Music

Antonio Vivaldi – The Four Seasons – Julia Fischer, violin
Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
Conductor: Kenneth Sillito
Director: Rhodri Huw
Filmed in the National Botanic Garden of Wales, July 2011

BBCFour programme of Vivaldi’s Gloria performed by an all-female orchestra and choir in the Pieta in Venice. Complementary to the BBC4 programme “Vivaldi and the Women of the Pieta” uploaded by markfromireland, which showed the progress of the project.

George Frideric Handel – Royal Choral Society: ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ from Handel’s Messiah

“Silent Monks” performing the Hallelujah Chorus from Messiah

Handel’s Water Music, Suite No. 1

Jeremiah Clarke: Prince of Denmark’s March (aka Trumpet Voluntary) performed by The Gateway Brass Quintet. Dan Smith and Robert Souza, Trumpets; Cheryl Hoard, Horn; Tom Vincent, Trombone; Jeff Hoard, Tuba. Recorded at St. Anthony of Padua, St. Louis, Missouri, February 21, 2009.