Chapter 5 The Middle Ages Music at Court Key Terms Troubadours Trouvères Minnesingers alba pastourelle Strophic form Estampies Music at Court Troubadour and Trouvère Songs Noble French poet-composers—knights, princes, and kings Troubadours from the south, trouvères from the north (Minnesingers in Germany) First large body of notated secular songs Songs about women, love, seduction, chivalry, death, the crusades, etc. Bernart de Ventadorn Lived c. 1135-1194 One of the finest troubadour poets His songs influenced other troubadours and trouvères Humble background, but came to serve Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine when she was married to England’s King Henry II Bernart, “La dousa votz” • • • • • • • Legato melody moves mostly by step Based on a medieval mode (Mixolydian) Metrical: feel of duple meter Simple rhythms at moderate tempo Homophonic: melody and accompaniment Solo tenor voice and plucked string instrument Words express joys and sorrows of earthly love Bernart, “La dousa votz” Strophic form: same music for each stanza • a a’ b pattern used within each stanza How Did Early Music Sound? Medieval notation indicated only pitches and (after c. 1200) rhythms It did not indicate tempo, instrumentation, tone quality, dynamics, and so on Early music performance has become an important area for scholarly research Based on careful study of performance practices, modern performers make welleducated guesses how a work might have been performed How Did Early Music Sound? Score for “La dousa votz” provides pitches only for the melody; it does not provide rhythm or accompaniment Where does the plucked string instrument come from? Medieval art shows troubadours singing with instruments, so our performers created a plausible accompaniment based on old folk music practices How Did Early Music Sound? Did the singer really sound that way? Did they perform the rhythms the way our singer did? Did they use accompaniment for this song? There were no recordings in 1190 We’ll never know for sure!