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10 b Oratorio

Date post: 05-Apr-2018
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    Chapter 10:Baroque Vocal



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    Key Terms


    chorus secco recitative

    accompanied recitative

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    Baroque Sacred Music

    placed special emphasis on choir

    borrowed from secular music (opera) recitative and aria

    virtuoso solo singing

    oratorio the most operatic genre

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    basically an opera on a religious subject often an Old Testament story

    narrative plot in several acts real characters and implied action

    recitatives and arias

    presented in concert form

    no scenery, costumes, staging, or gestures incorporated many more choruses than


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    Baroque Chorus

    similar to Renaissance choral music

    alternating polyphony and homophony

    some text painting incorporates theatrical features

    narrates story, comments on action,participates in action

    dramatic contrasts and rests

    voices and orchestra for maximum fullness

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    Handel, Messiah

    Handels most famous work

    composed in only 23 days

    unlike other oratorios not a real story

    anonymous narrators and commentators

    text entirely from Bible episodes from Jesuss life (recitative)

    comments on episodes (recitative, aria,and chorus)

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    Recitative,There were shepherds

    angels announce Christs birth

    recitative in four parts alternating secco and accompanied

    accompanied recitative reserved for

    dramatic moments parts 3 and 4 accelerate the pace

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    Chorus, Glory to God

    recitative and chorus

    choir participates in the action vivid contrasts in musical settings

    of the three phrases

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    Chorus, Glory to God

    Glory to God in the highest

    high voices, high pitches, rhythmic unison,

    energetic, marchlike

    and peace on earth low voices, low pitches, nearly monophonic

    slow, soft, calm, simple, unadorned

    good will toward men fugal style, imitative entrances

    motive intensified in ascending


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    Recitative and Chorus

    Recitative:There were shepherds abiding in the field, keeping

    watch over their flocks by night.And lo! The angel of the Lord came upon them, and the

    glory of the Lord shone round about them; and they

    were sore afraid.

    And the angel said unto them: Fear not, for behold, Ibring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to

    all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of

    David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

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    Recitative and Chorus

    And suddenly there was with the angle a multitude of

    the heavenly host, praising God, and saying:

    Chorus:Glory to Godin the highest! And peace on earth.

    Glory to Godin the highest! And peace on earth.

    Good will toward men.

    Glory to Godin the highest. And peace on earth.

    Good willtoward men.

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    Handel, Hallelujah Chorus

    famous chorus ends Part II

    contrasting textures for each phrase


    monophony: For the Lord God


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    Hallelujah Chorus

    many dramatic moments

    The Kingdom of this world is become

    piano, low descending scale

    swells suddenly to fortein higher register

    King of Kings intensifying sequence near the end

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    Hallelujah Chorus

    Hallelujah, Hallelujah!

    For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Hallelujah!

    For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.The Kingdom of this world is become the kingdom of

    our Lord and of his Christ.

    And He shall reign for ever and ever, and he shall reign

    for ever and ever.KING OF KINGS for ever and ever, Hallelujah!

    AND LORD OF LORDS for ever and ever, Hallelujah!