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Baroque and Classical Music

From 1600-1750 a period of western music composition known as the Baroque Period emerged following the Renaissance, but preceded that of the Classical Era. It was the Baroque Period which provided much of the composition influence necessary to spark the Classical Era.¹

Instruments commonly used in the composition of Baroque music consisted of¹:

  • Strings: violin, cello, guitar, harp, lute (among many others)
  • Woodwind: baroque flute, rackett, recorder, bassoon (among many others)
  • Brasses: baroque trumpet, flatt trumpet natural horn (among many others)
  • Keyboards: clavichord, tangent piano, harpsichord, organ, forte piano (early version of the piano)

The Baroque Period of musical history is said to have expanded musics' conceptual horizon through expansion of the complexity, range, and size of instrumental performance. This period also introduced many genres of music (sonata, oratorio, concerto, opera, cantata, and oratorio) which are still studied and enjoyed in present day.¹

During the Baroque Period, many of history's most influential composers emerged including Johann Sebastian Bach. 

Following 1750 (which marked the end of the Baroque Period), a new era of Musical composition formed which is now known as the Classical Era. The Classical Era introduced many of history's most influential composers including Joseph Haydn, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Ludwig van Beethoven, and Franz Schubert.¹ The Classical Era is characterized by a light texture and is fundamentally less complex when compared to the Baroque Period. In this era, musical importance was focused on instrumental composition (new composition organization included symphony, string quartet, serenade, concerto, divertimento, sonata, and trio). Alike the Baroque Period, the instruments commonly used in Classical Era composition included string, woodwind, keyboard, and brass instruments.¹



Image source:

1. Wikimedia


1. NAXOS. History of Classical Music. Retrieved May 27, 2014, from

Evolution of music is traced.

Describe, in great detail, how music has evolved from Antiquity through modern times. Examples of composers, music selections, as well as aesthetics would be VERY appropriate in this response.