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Commentary on Handel- And the Glory of the Lord from Messiah

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´╗┐And the Glory of the Lord from Messiah by Handel Comment on how Handel uses the following musical elements in this chorus: Tonality and Harmony, Texture, Melody, Rhythm and tempo, word setting. (10) Tonality and Harmony And the Glory of the Lord begins in the key of A major and there are modulations to the dominant key of E major (b.24) and then to the dominant of the dominant key of B major (b.68) (secondary dominant). The key then returns to E major and the piece finishes, finally, in A major. Minor keys are avoided, as the words dictate the prevailing joyful mood or ?affection? of the music. ...read more.


This adds dissonance and melodic decoration. A chain of suspensions appears in Bars 28 to 31, with dissonant notes being suspended in the Alto. Mainly only root position and first inversion chords appear in the piece. Texture The texture alternates between homophonic and contrapuntal textures and there are a few short monophonic sections. During the homophonic sections, it is usually the bass singers who hold the melody. Counterpoint (relationship between two or more voices) is often imitative which is when a melody in one part is copied a few notes later while the first melody continues. Handel also alternates between using the full choir and single voice part for effect. ...read more.


Rhythm and tempo The piece is in 3/4 throughout. However, hemiolas (bar in 3 time sounds like in 2 time) are seen which creates a lively rhythmic device. The longer notes are used to highlight certain words such as ?for the mouth of the Lord?? and contrast to the short lively rhythm of the other motifs. The piece is at Allegro and the only other change in tempo is at the end in which Handel uses Adagio. The ending (total silence followed by a sustained cadence) is typical of Handel?s fast choral movements. Word Setting The words in ?And the glory of the Lord? are a mixture of syllabic and melismatic. Motif A is syllabic (one note per syllable) whilst motif B is melismatic (several notes per syllable) as is motif C. Motif D is syllabic. ...read more.

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