Classical Music Meaning

What is Classical Music:

Classical music refers to musical compositions that span the period called musical classicism located between the years 1750 and 1820.

The name classical music has been defined by musicologists with the death of the German composer Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) who represented the baroque period that includes the years 1600 to 1750.

Classical music was born as a form of rupture against the strict rules of baroque music that were characterized by their horizontal structure where several melodies were superimposed at the same time.

Classical music contrasts with the previous period for lighter compositions due to the fact that it only had one main melody that was guiding all the instruments. This causes the same rhythm to be preserved in a succession of vertically structured chords called homophony.

One of the first composers of classical music was the Austrian Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) who stood out especially with the Symphony No.1 in D Major. The other two great composers who characterize this period are:

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791): The Marriage of Figaro, Serenade No. 13, Magic Flute
  • Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827): Symphony No. 5 in C minor, For Elisa, Symphony No. 9 in D minor.

In musical classicism, three types of musical compositions are also created:

  • The sonata: music written for various instruments.
  • The symphony: music to be performed by an orchestra.
  • The concert: composition for orchestra performed by various instruments.

In the history of music, the classical period is called the one that encompasses the Baroque (1600-1750), Classicism (1750-1820) and Romanticism (1820-1910), which can lead to the error of confusing the entire product of these three eras as classical music.

Although the use of classical music to cover these three periods is not exact, it is not considered incorrect, since classical music is popularly referred to as synonymous with scholarly, academic or cult music that encompasses the entire classical period ending with Contemporary age.

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