writing music historical essay

Write a brief historical essay (1,500 words) that contextualizes a work that we have studied this semester. Your essay must include the following components:

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1) bibliography (include five items, either books or articles, that discuss the composer, the genre, or the work. No websites please)

2) proper citations (footnotes)

3) historical context (your discussion should include at least five chronological references that explain aspects of the musical piece, its genre, style, performers, or performance location. Your chronological references can be drawn from: other musical pieces, composer biography, publications, patronage, art, or literature.)

4) musical analysis (your analysis should be connected to your historical context. For example, your musical analysis of a song from Caccini’s Le Nuove musiche should illustrate aspects of declamatory vocal style, basso continuo, and the ornamentation practices advocated by Caccini, and could include a comparison to a similar piece from the same time period by a different composer.)

5) thesis statement (your topic should frame a discussion or debate, as in “music scholars have said/my work shows”. Furthermore, all of your writing should either support ideas that you read about in your bibliography, as shown in footnotes, or should introduce a new idea that argues with ideas you read about in your bibliography, which should still be footnoted.)  

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