Article

Chamber Music

John Baron

in Music

ISBN: 9780199757824
Published online June 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199757824-0011
Chamber Music

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Chamber music is music for a small ensemble of solo instruments that is sophisticated and performed in an intimate setting. This excludes almost all vocal music, unaccompanied solo music, symphonic music, and music that is primarily virtuosic. While solo violin and violoncello music is sometimes regarded as chamber music, it lacks the ensemble component. The core repertory originated in Europe from the 17th century to the present, but increasing contributions have come from other areas of the world. The use of the term “chamber music” as defined here is specific for a type of music since the early 19th century, and this definition is applied retroactively to music of the previous two centuries; earlier uses of the term “music for the chamber” (musica da camera or Kammermusik) often include types of music that do not fit into this definition. Although most early chamber music is for bowed string instruments, winds and keyboard instruments have participated from the beginning, and since the onset of the 20th century percussion instruments have also been accepted in chamber music. Electronic instruments, in conjunction with traditional string and wind instruments, are also frequently found in chamber music since the mid-20th century. Technically, traditional jazz is also chamber music, but discussion of this genre belongs to another entry.

Article.  13254 words. 

Subjects: Music ; Applied Music ; Ethnomusicology ; Music Theory and Analysis ; Musicology and Music History ; Music Education and Pedagogy

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