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Understanding the Fundamentals of Classical Music by Richard Freedman

Understanding the Fundamentals of Classical Music

by Richard Freedman

Title Details

Audio Original
Running Time
7 Hrs. 21 Mins.


Music is a performative art. It stresses movement through time and engages our suggestive sense of its passing. Music has tendency, it normally invokes goals of various sorts, both near and far. Music has closure, a sensation not just of ending, but of expecting no more. Music also has accent. It is a dynamic process of stresses and nuance that often varies in dimension from one performance to the next. This course is not designed as a chronological survey of musical history and its many stylistic periods or moments, nor an exploration of the lives and output of individual composers. Instead, these lectures focus on the development of listening skills. Through this course you will develop new levels of aural awareness that will allow you to better appreciate the richness, complexity and excitement at the heart of all great concert music.

Richard Freedman is Chair of the Department of Music at Haverford College, where he teaches music history. His interests range from the music of sixteenth-century France and Italy to jazz and the music of South Asia. He earned his M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Pennsylvania, where he taught before joining the faculty at Haverford in 1986. He has published numerous articles and books on the history of music, including The Chansons of Orlando di Lasso and Their Protestant Listeners: Music, Piety, and Print in Sixteenth-Century France.

Lecture 1 Preliminary Thoughts and Encouragements

Lecture 2 On Musical Timbre

Lecture 3 Listening to Texture

Lecture 4 Listening to Melody

Lecture 5 Listening to Rhythm and Meter

Lecture 6 Listening to Harmony

Lecture 7 Kinds of Music

Lecture 8 Concerning Musical Representation

Lecture 9 Listening to Musical History

Lecture 10 Listening to Musical Forms: Sectional

Lecture 11 Listening to Musical Forms: Continuous

Lecture 12 Hearing Minuets, and Other Dance Forms

Lecture 13 Sonatas and Cycles

Lecture 14 Fantasy and Fugue

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