Early Music OpenCourseWare: MIT's Free Undergraduate Music History Course

Published Feb 02, 2009

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Discover the roots of Western Music, from the chants of ancient Greece and Rome to the Baroque period, which laid the groundwork for later musical styles. 'Early Music' offers a comprehensive investigation of these periods in music history. This OpenCourseWare from MIT is intended for undergraduate students in a Music degree program.

Early Music: Course Specifics

Degree Level Free Audio Video Downloads
Undergraduate Yes Yes No Yes

Lectures/Notes Study Materials Tests/Quizzes
Yes Yes Yes

Early Music: Course Description

Most music enthusiasts take the foundations of Western music for granted; yet thousands of years ago the concepts of the tonal system, scales and choral harmony were being refined. Explore the musical evolution of Western Culture through listening to modern performances and analyzing musical manuscripts. This free course begins with music in Greek and Roman antiquity and ends with the baroque period of the late 17th century. This class also focuses on French and Italian music in the 1300's, London in the time of Queen Elizabeth I (1558 to 1603) and the Baroque period in Vienna. Major topics include medieval and chant music introduction, chant to 1315, 14th century music (mostly Italian), continental renaissance, Elizabethan London, late renaissance missed traditions, Venice music (1570 to 1660), Monteverdi - 1567 to 1642 and baroque music and music near the end of the 17th century. Professor Michael Scott Cuthbert taught this lecture format course. This class is part of an undergraduate Music program.

This free OpenCourseWare provides a list of class readings, a listening list, quizzes, exams, class assignments and lecture notes. If you want to learn more about early music in Western Culture, visit the western music history - antiquity to 1680 course page.

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