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Glossary of Concerto Grosso

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Concerto Grosso
(def.)
a important form of orchestral music in the late baroque period where a small group of soloists is pitted against a larger group of players called the tutti
tutti
most of it consists of strings
structure
usually comes in 3 movements
the 3 movements
fast-slow-fast
opening movement
vigorous, fast, brilliant, determined, clearly showing the contrast between soloists and tutti
(ritornello form)
2nd movement
slow, quieter, and often lyrical and intimate
last movement
lively, carefree, almost like a dance
(ritornello form)
ritornello form
the tutti opens with a theme called the RITORNELLO (refrain); this theme is always played by the TUTTI; the theme RETURNS IN DIFFERENT KEYS throughout the movement, though USUALLY IN FRAGMENTS, not complete
solo sections
offer fresh melodic ideas, softer dynamics, rapid scales, and broken chords (may also expand short melodic ideas from the tutti)
example
J.S. Bach
Brandenburg Concerto No.5 in D Major

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