Although Music in the Baroque focuses primarily on Western European music ( Italian Peninsula, Great Britain, Holy Roman Empire, Habsburg Empire [Vienna], the book raises fundamental questions about the relationship of music to society that can be applied to other parts of the world. What is the impact of age, race, social class, nationality, and religion on the production and consumption of music? What is the relationship between music and power? How do different notions about religious faith shape music making? This page provides links to articles, websites, and repertory that can be studied in tandem with Music in the Baroque.
For more materials, see also Inclusiveearlymusic.org, established by Giovanni Zanovello and Erika Honisch.
Part I: Musical Expression and Innovation
Chapter one: Baroque Music in Early Modern Europe
Readings relevant to this chapter might focus on questions of periodization and the concept of baroque outside of Europe, especially New Spain.
- Juan Luis Suárez and Estfanía Olid-Peña, “Hispanic Baroque: A Model for the Study of Cultural Complexity in the Atlantic World, South Atlantic Review 72 (2007), pp. 31-47
- Lois Parkinson Zamora, “Eccentric Periodization: Comparative Perspectives on the Enlightenment and the Baroque,” PMLA 128 (May 2013), pp. 690-697.
This might be supplemented with an exploration of art and architecture from New Spain, as in this brief video:
Students might also be interested in learning about how knowledge about music traveled to Asia from Europe.
- David R. M. Irving, “The Dissemination and use of Early Music Books in Early Modern Asia, ” Early Music History 28 (2009), pp. 39-59
Chapter two: Ancients and Moderns
Since this chapter introduces solo song and also provides an opportunity for instructors to compare performances of songs and madrigals, this is a good opportunity to introduce the villancico and questions about performance practice. It may also be useful to think about the “new world” in relationship to the various debates about the ancients and moderns.
Geoff Baker, “Latin American Baroque: Performance as a post-colonial act?” Early Music 36 (2008), pp. 441-448
Here are performances of Juan Gutiérrez de Padilla’s “A siolo flasquiyo,” discussed in Baker’s article.
Chapter 3: Theatrical Baroque
This chapter opens up a number of opportunities to work outside of a conventional music history framework. Students might be interested in tracing version of the Orpheus myth transferred to other cultures, such as the film Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus), based on the play by Vinicius de Moraes, directed by Marcel Camus [see the Criterion Edition collection for interviews] or explore the Tony-award winning Broadway play Hadestown.
The treatment of race, nationality, and gender is particularly provocative in the English masque repertory, discussed in the latter part of the chapter, along with the whole question of “exoticism.” The following articles offer rich perspectives on the specific cultural context and the ways in which race figured into other discourse in seventeenth-century England.
- Jennifer Linhart Wood, “‘Drums Rumble Within'”: Embodied Experiences of Temples in the East and on the London Stage,” in Sounding Otherness in Early Modern Drama and Travel: Uncanny Vibrations in the English Archive (Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave MacMillan, 2019), pp. 205-258.
- Sarah Schmalen, “Hearing the Other in The Masque of Blackness,” in Blackness in Opera, ed. Naomi André, Karen M. Bryan, and Eric Taylor (Urbana, Chicago, and Springfield: University of Illinois Press, 2012), pp. 32-54.
Chapter 4: Art and Craft of Instrumental Music
This chapter provides an opportunity to consider the transmission of European instruments to other continents, the similarity and differences between instruments from different parts of the world, and the ways in which western instruments were shaped by those imported from other countries and cultures. Students might want to explore websites from instrument collections, such this article on the lute or this cross-cultural exploration of brass instruments from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Other readings of interest are listed below:
- Joyce Lindorff, “Missionaries, Keyboards and Musical Exchanges in the Ming and Qing Courts,” Early Music 32 (2004), pp. 403-414.
- David Francis Urrows, “The Pipe Organ of the Baroque Era in China,” China and the West: Music, Representation, and Reception, ed. Yang Hon-fun and Michael Saffle (Ann Arbor: University of Michican Press, 2017), pp. 21-48).
- David R. M. Irving, “Comparative Organography in Early Modern Empires,” Music & Letters 90 (2009), 327-398.
This article on the guitar in the paintings of Vermeer also provides a fascinating window into the cross-cultural history of that instrument. Students might want to listen to the music of the Spanish composer Gaspar Sanz (1640-1710) and take a look at his guide to playing the guitar, comparing the tablature notation to John Dowland’s “Flow My Tears” in chapter 2.
excerpts from the printed score shown below:
Chapter five: Music in Civic and Religious Ritual
There are numerous options for studying early modern civic and religious rituals throughout the world; instructors might want to consider adding an extra class at the end of this unit to give ample time for students to explore one more of these more thoroughly.
- Carol A. Hess, “Experiencing Latin American Religious Music,” in Experiencing Latin American Music (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2018), pp. 88-127 (an engaging general introduction to religious music in Latin America including and beyond the baroque, geared for students, with interactive activities).
- Kristin Mann, “Musical Cultures Meet,” in The Power of Song: Music and Dance in the Mission Communities of Northern New Spain, 1590-1810 (Stanford and Berkeley: Stanford University Press and The Academy of American Franciscan History, 2010), pp. 69-99
- John Koegel, “Spanish and French Mission Music in Colonial North America,” Journal of the Royal Musical Association 126 (2001), 1-53.
- Robin A. Leaver, “More than Simple Psalm-Singing in English: Music in Early Colonial America,” Yale Journal of Music & Religion 1 (2015), pp. 63-80. (This article would also work well with Chapter 8).
Below are a few samples of the many recordings of Catholic liturgical from Latin America.
See also David R. Irving, “Latin American Baroque,” Early Music 39 (2011), pp. 295-298 for a fascinating discussion of the various approaches that performers are using for this repertory (this could be studied in tandem with Geoff Baker’s article on post-colonial performances cited above). See below for the Spotify playlist for three of the albums discussed by Irving.