Baroque Period vs. Classical Period


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Harpsichord

Welcome! The purpose of this page is to enhance the materials on Baroque and Classical Music that we've been learning about in music class. This website will help you review, and hopefully help you discover something new about the musical characteristics, and composers from the Baroque and Classical Periods of music. As you listen to the music recordings on the website I ask that you listen to at least the first 30 seconds of the piece. If you'd like to listen to more, please feel free. Read and listen to the materials on the website, then proceed to the discussion forum to complete your assignment. Use your handout to guide you in your tasks.


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Santiago Cathedral
The Baroque Period is a time period that ranged from about 1600-1750. This was a time of discovery in the arts and the sciences. Architecture was ornate and beautiful, many famous cathedrals were constructed in England during this time. Music changed and evolved a great deal during the Baroque Period. Music started to take shape into what we know today because of the tonalities and structures that were established during this time.

The Classical Period began around 1750 and lasted until about 1825 as Beethoven bridged the gap to the Romantic Period of music. During this period music became more accessible to everyone as composers began to write music that was easier for the common public to understand. The music of the Classical Era was balanced and simple, yet diverse.

During these time periods the "New World," America, had just been discovered. Colonies were being established and people began to immigrate from Europe. The end of the Classical Period (around 1750) was just a few decades before the United States of America won it's independence from Britain 1776 after the Revolutionary War.

Can you tell what period this music is from?

There are two listening examples below. One of them is from the Baroque Period. One of them is from the Classical Period. Based on what you know see if you can take a guess as to what period each of them belongs to. After you learn more about each musical period come back and see if you were correct.

Example 1

1801 Beethoven: "Moonlight" Sonata, 1st movement - 1801 Beethoven: "Moonlight" Sonata, 1st movement

Example 2

Bach (JS): Anna Magdalena Notenbuch - Minuet In G, BWV Anh 114 - Janos Sebestyen

Before you go on....

Visit the website below before you go on to the other pages. This site will summarize some of the key musical characteristics in each Era.
Baroque vs. Classical Style


Now proceed to explore the Baroque and Classical pages to the left.