1501 in Music- Lecture 2Author:
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1. Previously, in the # period, a composer%27s role would have been somewhat ambiguous. St. Gregory, for instance, (of Gregorian chant fame) would be said today to have composed chants. However, Gregory himself attributed these chants to divine inspiration.
2. Some scholars, such as Lydia #, argue that Medieval and early Renaissance music was not created so much as crafted, and that little creativity actually went into compositions of the time. Therefore, one may argue that the role of the composer (which she seems to interpret to mean a creative craftsman) did not exist.
3. Some argue there was a creative process involved in the composition of works from 1300, as Johannes de # notes that the tenor part was often created from scratch.
4. Rob C Wegman suggests that the tenorist occupied a creative role much later than this, around 1490- 1500, coordinating extemporisation while the composer worked with #. He goes as far as to suggest that the conductor and the tenorist may even have been the same person, though admitting that no evidence has yet come to light to support this view.
5. In 1495, # described the composer as %22the maker of some new song%22 suggesting that the role was starting to be defined around this time but that creativity was of less significance for composers then than it is now, and that the word composer probably did refer to a sort of craftsman at the time.
6. Around 1500, radical changes took place regarding the role of the composer. It suddenly became a %22# designation%22 according to Wegman, not simply the job of a church cleric as it was previously. This resulted in greater public interest. Prior to this, Wegman notes, the word composer was a %22technical term%22 with %22little or no social reality%22.
7. Prior to this, the only composer deemed interesting in his own right was #, though this was probably more due to his career as a poet than that as a composer.
A) Guillame de Machaut
8. In #, the job title %22composer%22 was used in formal documents for the first time, relating to the employment of Heinrich Isaac.
9. One fifteenth/ sixteenth century choir master who has been compared to composers from the Classical and Romantic periods is Josquin des Prez. According to #, he was viewed as arrogant and unreliable, demanding more money than his contemporaries in exchange for less work. However, he was still employed and the public seemed to take a keen interest in him: he is mentioned in lots of sources.