The Growth of Music
After the cloud of “Dark Age”, when the sinister period that marred the world came to an end, music and other humanistic fields begun to resurrect. Secular music was among the fields that made a comeback after this period. People were more interested in personal happiness and freedom of thought and expression. These philosophical aspects saw their way into the music that was composed in this epoch. Madrigals were extensively composed across the world of music along with acapella and motets among other famous compositions. Madrigals had inculcated of the characteristics of life aspects, which emerged in this particular period.
Madrigals were a combination of two genres of music: they mixed homophonic and polyphonic aspects. Given the time and period this music was composed, poetry was a major aspect and inspiration to this music. Therefore, madrigals were formed from short poetics majoring in the theme of love. The origin of these compositions is Italy, around 1520 (Willoughby). However, much of madrigals became known in 1588. This was after most of the Italian compositions were translated into English (Willoughby).
Another aspect that informed madrigals is a shift in text. This genre of music was composed in vernacular and other local dialects apart from the common placed Latin. It will be noted that the Renaissance gave rise to self-expression and liberty of though. As a result, music borrowed from the changing philosophical views in the society. Using local dialects and vernacular was instrumental in the entire growth of this music. Madrigals had also incorporated fine arts into the entire musical discourse. There was reference to art works and the use of unusual harmonics. This made madrigals unique and entirely different from other forms of music of the day. Some of the madrigals were composed and dedicated to the Queen Elizabeth (Willoughby).
Mozart and the Enlightenment
The age of enlightenment brought about immense change in the realms of music. This is a time when musicians were becoming more established. Most of the music recorded in this period reflected liberty of thought and private practice. This was after an age of patronage on musicians from the elite in the then society. Before this time, musicians were at the mercies of the church, royals, and the bourgeoisie. However, with the rise of the middle class and a shift to industrialization, music became more pronounced and several musicians developed their own music for the first time without undue influence from a few people in the society. Mozart was a living example of this era in music. He rose to stardom due to several aspects that favored his like in the then nascent music industry.
Mozart made his debut in music while he was living in Vienna. Indeed, Mozart is among the first musicians to record their own music and perform it. Enlightenment is an age characterized by an ardent quest for knowledge. Music was seen as an instrument and an agent of education. Musicians had proved this by addressing the ills and issues around the world. Music as a tool of communication and entertainment became relevant and many sought it for its power (Willoughby).
Mozart benefited from the rise in the middle class. Given that there had been restrictions on music before this age, people had an appetite for this rare commodity. As a result, music was on high demand. This gave rise to a cohort of concerts across the world. This situation gave impetus to upcoming musicians. Mozart had been dominating the musical airwaves; therefore, he used this vacuum to make a name for himself as well as establish his music. He staged performances across the world to the highest bidder (Willoughby). In the end, he was a young and rich composer and performer of the opera. His relics and compositions continue to be performed and studied in the world today. All this was made possible by the rise of different schools of thought and a more secular mind set.
Willoughby, David. The world of music.New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2011.