Timeline

Series produced by Vermont Public Radio

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Image by: Vermont Public Radio 

Take a journey into the events, characters and concepts that shaped our Western musical tradition.

Timeline from VPR Classical is an exploration into the development of Western music. Take a journey into the events, characters and concepts that shaped our Western musical tradition. We'll start from the very beginning and trace the steps of music through history. This music, and its history, is ours.


40 Pieces

Order by: Newest First | Oldest First
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The years 1813 to 1816 were a dry period for Beethoven. He was wrestling with his health and with his family. His brother, Casper, had passed away ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:01
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At the dawning of the 19th Century Beethoven had not given up hope that his doctors would find a treatment to reverse his hearing loss. His condit...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:05
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Ludwig van Beethoven has been called the most admired composer in all of music history. His legacy stands as a monument for the entire 19th Centur...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:05
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Muzio Clementi was called the “father of the pianoforte”. He earned this title, not because he played the instrument first, but because he played ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The rise of the American and French Revolutions were signs of deep changes in the Western world in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Not on...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:01
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Even if you’re not that familiar with classical music you still know the name Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and can probably hum a few of his tunes. His...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The word symphony is one of the most iconic musical terms, but what makes a piece of music a symphony? The term itself is a compound word with Gre...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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Franz Joseph Haydn is a towering figure of the Classical era. He didn’t just mimic the changes of the late 18th century, in a large way, his music...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The Age of Enlightenment in the 18th Century called into question the powers of the monarchy and religious dogma. There was an emphasis on scienti...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The death of J.S. Bach in 1750 has traditionally been regarded as the end of the Baroque Period. The well-known Classical era (of Haydn, Mozart an...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:02
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Johann Sebastian Bach had two wives and a total of 20 children from both marriages. Sadly, only half of those children survived to adulthood. Of ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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Bach’s seminal work The Well-Tempered Clavier showcases an ability that we take for granted in modern music. Today, we have the ability to play wi...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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For the Bach family of Germany music was a family business. Over 50 members of the Bach family were employed as musicians over the course of two c...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The Baroque era was a time of blending cultures as the European continent was becoming smaller and more connected. A mixture of influences from Ita...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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Georg Philipp Telemann was unquestionably the most prolific composer of his generation. He wrote over 3,000 individual works ranging from chamber ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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Antonio Vivaldi is a name that has become synonymous with the Baroque concerto. His style and massive output has influenced composers for almost 3...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The 17th Century is as also known as the Age of Reason and saw the birth of the scientific method. The music and writings of French composer Jean ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 02:59
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The spectacle and splendor of opera began in the aristocratic halls of Italy and spread to the blossoming opera houses of Venice. Opera became a c...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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The Baroque saw many influential musical families as the craft and career of composition and performing was passed from father to son and daughter ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00
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During the Baroque, several families made their mark in the world of music. In Italy there were few families more influential than the Scarlattis.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2020
  • Length: 03:00