Wednesday, February 14, 2018

MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS Of The Renaissance, The Ancestor Of Modern Musical Instruments

Wind instruments in the Musical Instrument Mus...
Wind instruments in the Musical Instrument Museum, Brussels, Belgium. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The Renaissance is an important time period of history; the word means in French “rebirth” and is very appropriate to define the most spectacular historical age in Italy. Western Europe was also influenced by its main features, the revival of learning based on classical sources (Greek and Latin), and the rise of papal patronage, the development of perspective and great advancements of science. 

Albrecht Durer was the first to describe Italian art as “renaissance”. Giorgio Vasari, Giotto, Masaccio, Brunelleschi and Donatello are developing the painting art to the perfection. Leonardo da Vinci, a great scientist, painter and sculptor, Michelangelo developed their awesome art on the desire to study the nature.

The Renaissance was a great period for musical instruments. Renaissance music is represented by liturgical forms. Composers of sacred music began to adopt new forms, such as “Madrigal” and use improved musical instruments of the Renaissance. Sacred new genres appeared; the madrigal spirituale, the laude, the mass and the motet. Instrumental music was composed for viol or recorder. Most popular genres were the toccata, the ricercar, the prelude, and the canzona. The great idea of polyphonies, the basis of today’s music, is coming from those great times.

The most important is that most of the musical modern instruments have evolved from the musical instruments of the Renaissance. Many popular musical instruments, such as flute, oboe, trumpet, trombone, and guitar can be traced back to the Renaissance. Wind instruments are really related to this period. Many musical instruments of the Renaissance were made out of wood, such as shawm, flute, recorder or sackbut. The shawm is the first oboe; it is also the ancestor of English horn and bassoon. All these musical instruments of the Renaissance were played with a double reed. The shawm produces really loud sounds, the kortholt, and the dulcian too. All those musical instruments of the Renaissance are using a reed-cap and have a two and one half octave range.

The cornetts were also very popular during the Renaissance; all of them were made out of wood. Today the trumpets are made out of brass. Musical instruments of the Renaissance such as cornetts coma in three types: the curved cornett, the mute cornett, and the straight cornett. The recorder, the flute, and the transverse wee also very popular during the Renaissance, because they were easy to play.

The transverse flute was the first musical instrument of the Renaissance where the vibrato can be used. Today vibrato is used on a large scale of musical instruments.

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