The Baroque Era

17th to mid-18th century

(Classical Music Map)


I. History of Classical Music  (by John Stanley)
The great composers and their masterworks in MP3 format
Albeniz Borodin Donizetti Hindemith Prokofiev Schutz
Albinoni Brahms Dowland Janacek Puccini Scriabin
Allegri Britten Dvorak Kodaly Purcell Sibelius
Arne Bruckner Falla Leoncavallo Rachmaninov Smetana
Auber Busoni Field Liszt Rameau Strauss J.S.
Bach Byrd Gabrieli Lully Ravel Strauss R.
Barber Carissimi Gershwin Mahler Respighi Stravinsky
Bartok Charpentier Gesualdo Mendelssohn Rimsky-Korsakov Tallis
Beethoven Cherubini Glinka Meyerbeer Rossini Tchaikovsky
Bellini Chopin Gluck Monteverdi Saint-Saens Telemann
Bernstein Clementi Gounod Mozart Scarlatti Verdi
Berwald Corelli Grieg Mussorgsky Schoenberg Victoria
Berlioz Couperin Handel Pachelbel Shostakovich Villa-Lobos
Bizet Debussy Haydn Paganini Schubert Vivaldi
Boccherini Delibes Hildegard Palestrina Schumann Wagner
Orff  "Carmina Burana"
II. History of Jazz

Jean-Philippe Rameau



Joan—Philippe Rameau was born in Dijon, one of 11 children, and studied at a Jesuit College - It is father's initial intention being that he should become a lawyer — before being allowed to go to study music in Milan at the age of 18. After a number of appointments as organist, he settled in Clermont m 1715, where he was organist at the cathedral for eight years.

During this period Rameau wrote his first collection of harpsichord pieces and m 1722 published his book on music theory, Treatise on harmony. He tried to move to Paris, the centre of creative activity, but encountered resistance from his employers in Clermont. It is said that on a particular feast day he simply refused to play, and when pressed, performed with so many discordant notes that he was released from duty. He moved to Paris but for a decade he failed to secure a formal position, although he continued to compose, and published his second and third books of harpsichord works. He made a living by teaching music, in 1732 becoming organist at Ste Croix-de-la-13retonnerie and the following year at the Jesuit novitiate.

Rameau s desire to write an opera received help from an admirer - the wife of a financier, Le Riche de la Poupliniere, who funded a private orchestra. Through this circle the composer met the writer Abbe Simon-Joseph Pellegrin, and together they created his first opera, Hippolyte et Aricie, based on Racine's tragedy Phedre. It was performed in 1733 at Poupliniere's residence, and then at the Opera in Paris three months later.

Rameau was 50 when his Hippolyte et Aricie was performed and he spent the rest of Ins working life producing operas. In these lie stressed musical elements more than Lully had done, stating, "Lully needs actors but I need singers." Les Indes galantes in 1735 and Castor et Pollux m 1737 were great successes, showing Rameau's bold harmonies and establishing him as Lully's successor as the leading light of French opera. A comic opera, Platee, was also successful when performed at the Paris Opera in 1745, m part because it parodied the set language and conventions of serious opera. Some of its jests were sentimental words set to inappropriate music, incorrect stress of words or syllables, and the use of "unoperatic" phrases and expressions.

Rameau died just before his eighty-first birthday, shortly after Louis XV, in recognition of his long service and lifetime of creative effort, made him Composieur du Cabinet du Roy. His death was marked by a number of memorial services, the passion and vibrance of his music ensuring a great sense of loss at his passing.



Jean-Philippe Rameau



Jean-Philippe Rameau (1683-1764)



Ariette D'Hippolyteet Arice
  Castor et Pollux
  Les Indes galantes






















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