History Of The Suite : French Keyboard And Lute Music During The 17th Century

1293 Words Apr 29th, 2015 6 Pages
BRDPAT004
History of Music 1 Assignment
The development of the suite in French keyboard and lute music during the 17th century

Looking at the suite from a German perspective, it seems as if the French suite is less cohesive and refined as compared to the fixed structure of dances found in the German suite. The French suite is described as a ‘loose form’ as it is sometimes seen as a sequence of contrasting dances and other times as a series of dances in the same key. In early French suites it can be said that the influence of other cultural aspects in society is vast on the music. Trends noted in society pertaining to aesthetics and values can be found represented in the music. One of the earliest significant publications of a keyboard suite was “Pieces de clavicin” by Jacques Champion Chambonnieres, who was seen as a big figure in the development of suite. Another significant manuscript, known as the Bauyn MS , features dances by both Chambonnieres and his student, Louis Couperin. The arrangement of early suites in France differs, but it is noted that these manuscripts are arranged by composer, key and genre. The dances were arranged by key in ascending order. In these early examples the Courantes always appeared before the Sarabandes and Gigue. Some evidence does exist that some consideration was taken by the composers to specify the order in which pieces should be played. Notes were usually made on the top of manuscripts for example written on a Gigue from D’anglebert’s…
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