Duet

Last updated
The Duet (1628), by Hendrick ter Brugghen Hendrik ter Brugghen - Het duet.jpg
The Duet (1628), by Hendrick ter Brugghen

A duet is a musical composition for two performers in which the performers have equal importance to the piece, often a composition involving two singers or two pianists. It differs from a harmony, as the performers take turns performing a solo section rather than performing simultaneously. A piece performed by two pianists performing together on the same piano is a "piano duet" or "piano four hands". [1] A piece for two pianists performing together on separate pianos is a "piano duo".

Musical composition aesthetic ordering and disposing of musical information

Musical composition, or simply composition, can refer to an original piece or work of music, either vocal or instrumental, the structure of a musical piece, or to the process of creating or writing a new piece of music. People who create new compositions are called composers. Composers of primarily songs are usually called songwriters; with songs, the person who writes lyrics for a song is the lyricist. In many cultures, including Western classical music, the act of composing typically includes the creation of music notation, such as a sheet music "score," which is then performed by the composer or by other instrumental musicians or singers. In popular music and traditional music, songwriting may involve the creation of a basic outline of the song, called the lead sheet, which sets out the melody, lyrics and chord progression. In classical music, orchestration is typically done by the composer, but in musical theatre and in pop music, songwriters may hire an arranger to do the orchestration. In some cases, a pop or traditional songwriter may not use written notation at all, and instead compose the song in their mind and then play, sing and/or record it from memory. In jazz and popular music, notable sound recordings by influential performers are given the weight that written or printed scores play in classical music.

Performing arts art forms in which artists use their body or voice to convey artistic expression

Performing arts refers to forms of art in which artists use their voices, bodies or inanimate objects to convey artistic expression. It is different from visual arts, which is when artists use paint, canvas or various materials to create physical or static art objects. Performing arts include a range of disciplines which are performed in front of a live audience.

Harmony aspect of music

In music, harmony is the process by which the composition of individual sounds, or superpositions of sounds, is analysed by hearing. Usually, this means simultaneously occurring frequencies, pitches, or chords.

Contents

"Duet" is also used as a verb for the act of performing a musical duet, or colloquially as a noun to refer to the performers of a duet.

A verb, from the Latin verbum meaning word, is a word that in syntax conveys an action, an occurrence, or a state of being. In the usual description of English, the basic form, with or without the particle to, is the infinitive. In many languages, verbs are inflected to encode tense, aspect, mood, and voice. A verb may also agree with the person, gender or number of some of its arguments, such as its subject, or object. Verbs have tenses: present, to indicate that an action is being carried out; past, to indicate that an action has been done; future, to indicate that an action will be done.

Noun part of speech in grammar denoting a figurative or real thing or person

A noun is a word that functions as the name of some specific thing or set of things, such as living creatures, objects, places, actions, qualities, states of existence, or ideas. However, noun is not a semantic category, so that it cannot be characterized in terms of its meaning. Thus, actions and states of existence can also be expressed by verbs, qualities by adjectives, and places by adverbs. Linguistically, a noun is a member of a large, open part of speech whose members can occur as the main word in the subject of a clause, the object of a verb, or the object of a preposition.

A musical ensemble with more than two solo instruments or voices is called trio, quartet, quintet, sextet, septet, octet, etc.

Musical ensemble group of people who perform instrumental and/or vocal music, with the ensemble typically known by a distinct name

A musical ensemble, also known as a music group or musical group, is a group of people who perform instrumental or vocal music, with the ensemble typically known by a distinct name. Some music ensembles consist solely of instruments, such as the jazz quartet or the orchestra. Some music ensembles consist solely of singers, such as choirs and doo wop groups. In both popular music and classical music, there are ensembles in which both instrumentalists and singers perform, such as the rock band or the Baroque chamber group for basso continuo and one or more singers. In classical music, trios or quartets either blend the sounds of musical instrument families or group together instruments from the same instrument family, such as string ensembles or wind ensembles. Some ensembles blend the sounds of a variety of instrument families, such as the orchestra, which uses a string section, brass instruments, woodwinds and percussion instruments, or the concert band, which uses brass, woodwinds and percussion.

Trio (music) group of three musicians

In music, a trio is a method of instrumentation or vocalization by three different sounds or voices to make a melodious music or song.

In music, a quartet or quartette is an ensemble of four singers or instrumental performers; or a musical composition for four voices or instruments.

History

When Mozart was young, he and his sister Marianne played a duet of his composition at a London concert in 1765. The four-hand, described as a duet, was in many of his compositions which included five sonatas; a set of variations, two performers and one instrument, and a sonata for two pianos. The first published sonata or duet was in 1777. [2]

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Austrian composer of the Classical period

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, baptised as Johannes Chrysostomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, was a prolific and influential composer of the classical era.

Maria Anna Mozart Austrian musician

Maria Anna Walburga Ignatia Mozart, called "Marianne" and nicknamed Nannerl, was a musician, the older sister of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791) and daughter of Leopold (1719-1787) and Anna Maria Mozart (1720-1778).

Sonata composition for one or more solo instruments

Sonata, in music, literally means a piece played as opposed to a cantata, a piece sung. The term evolved through the history of music, designating a variety of forms until the Classical era, when it took on increasing importance. Sonata is a vague term, with varying meanings depending on the context and time period. By the early 19th century, it came to represent a principle of composing large-scale works. It was applied to most instrumental genres and regarded—alongside the fugue—as one of two fundamental methods of organizing, interpreting and analyzing concert music. Though the musical style of sonatas has changed since the Classical era, most 20th- and 21st-century sonatas still maintain the same structure.

In Renaissance music, a duet specifically intended as a teaching tool, to be performed by teacher and student, was called a bicinium (see Étude ).

Renaissance music musical period between the 15th and 17th centuries

Renaissance music is vocal and instrumental music written and performed in Europe during the Renaissance era. Consensus among music historians has been to start the era around 1400, with the end of the medieval era, and to close it around 1600, with the beginning of the Baroque period, therefore commencing the musical Renaissance about a hundred years after the beginning of the Renaissance as it is understood in other disciplines. As in the other arts, the music of the period was significantly influenced by the developments which define the Early Modern period: the rise of humanistic thought; the recovery of the literary and artistic heritage of Ancient Greece and Ancient Rome; increased innovation and discovery; the growth of commercial enterprises; the rise of a bourgeois class; and the Protestant Reformation. From this changing society emerged a common, unifying musical language, in particular, the polyphonic style of the Franco-Flemish school, whose greatest master was Josquin des Prez.

In music of the Renaissance and early Baroque eras, a bicinium was a composition for only two parts, especially one for the purpose of teaching counterpoint or singing.

Étude short, difficult musical study work

An étude is an instrumental musical composition, usually short, of considerable difficulty, and designed to provide practice material for perfecting a particular musical skill. The tradition of writing études emerged in the early 19th century with the rapidly growing popularity of the piano. Of the vast number of études from that era some are still used as teaching material, and a few, by major composers such as Frédéric Chopin, Franz Liszt and Claude Debussy, achieved a place in today's concert repertory. Études written in the 20th century include those related to traditional ones and those that require wholly unorthodox technique.

In opera

Duets have always been a part of the structure of operas. Early 16th-century operas such as L'Orfeo and L'incoronazione di Poppea involve duets throughout the performance. In 17th-century Italy duets were often used in comic scenes within serious operas. In Baroque France the duet was popular in tragedies, such as songs of vengeance and confrontation. The love duet was characterized by singing in close harmonies of 3rds and 6ths, symbolizing unity after conflict. [3]

Opera Artform combining sung text and musical score in a theatrical setting

Opera is a form of theatre in which music has a leading role and the parts are taken by singers, but is distinct from musical theater. Such a "work" is typically a collaboration between a composer and a librettist and incorporates a number of the performing arts, such as acting, scenery, costume, and sometimes dance or ballet. The performance is typically given in an opera house, accompanied by an orchestra or smaller musical ensemble, which since the early 19th century has been led by a conductor.

<i>LOrfeo</i> opera by Claudio Monteverdi, with libretto by Alessandro Striggio

L'Orfeo, sometimes called La favola d'Orfeo[la ˈfaːvola dorˈfɛːo], is a late Renaissance/early Baroque favola in musica, or opera, by Claudio Monteverdi, with a libretto by Alessandro Striggio. It is based on the Greek legend of Orpheus, and tells the story of his descent to Hades and his fruitless attempt to bring his dead bride Eurydice back to the living world. It was written in 1607 for a court performance during the annual Carnival at Mantua. While Jacopo Peri's Dafne is generally recognised as the first work in the opera genre, and the earliest surviving opera is Peri's Euridice, L'Orfeo is the earliest that is still regularly performed.

<i>Lincoronazione di Poppea</i> opera by Claudio Monteverdi

L'incoronazione di Poppea is an Italian opera by Claudio Monteverdi. It was Monteverdi's last opera, with a libretto by Giovanni Francesco Busenello, and was first performed at the Teatro Santi Giovanni e Paolo in Venice during the 1643 carnival season. One of the first operas to use historical events and people, it describes how Poppaea, mistress of the Roman emperor Nero, is able to achieve her ambition and be crowned empress. The opera was revived in Naples in 1651, but was then neglected until the rediscovery of the score in 1888, after which it became the subject of scholarly attention in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Since the 1960s, the opera has been performed and recorded many times.

Famous operatic duets

In pop music

Johnny Cash & June Carter Johnny Cash & June Carter.png
Johnny Cash & June Carter

Throughout the 20th century duets have been common in the popular music of the era. Some songs were written to be heard as conversations, such as "Baby, It's Cold Outside". Others were performed around a theme, for example New York in "Empire State of Mind". Occasionally duets are an improvisation between artists, such as "Under Pressure". David Bowie and Freddie Mercury reportedly composed the lyrics in a day by improvising together. [4]

Famous pop duets

Related Research Articles

Giacomo Puccini 19th and 20th-century Italian opera composer

Giacomo Antonio Domenico Michele Secondo Maria Puccini was an Italian opera composer who has been called "the greatest composer of Italian opera after Verdi".

Muzio Clementi Italian-born English composer, pianist, pedagogue, conductor, music publisher, editor, and piano manufacturer

Muzio Filippo Vincenzo Francesco Saverio Clementi was an Italian-born English composer, pianist, pedagogue, conductor, music publisher, editor, and piano manufacturer.

1956 in music Overview of the events of 1956 in music

This is a list of notable events in music that took place in the year 1956.

Solo (music) musical piece or part of musical piece performed by a single musician

In music, a solo is a piece or a section of a piece played or sung featuring a single performer, who may be performing completely alone or supported by an accompanying instrument such as a piano or organ, a continuo group, or the rest of a choir, orchestra, band, or other ensemble. Performing a solo is "to solo", and the performer is known as a soloist.

Franz Reizenstein British composer

Franz Theodor Reizenstein was a German-born British composer and concert pianist. He left Germany for sanctuary in Britain in 1934 and went on to have his career there, including teaching at the Royal Manchester College of Music and Boston University, as well as performing.

VH1 debuted the first annual VH1 Divas concert in 1998. VH1 Divas Live was created to support the channel's Save The Music Foundation and subsequent concerts in the series have also benefited that foundation. The VH1 Divas concerts aired annually from 1998 to 2004. After a five-year hiatus, the series returned in 2009 with a younger-skewed revamp. In 2010 the concert saluted the troops and in 2011 it celebrated soul music, doubling the previous year's ratings. After a dance music-focused 2012 edition aired live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on December 16, 2012, the show took another hiatus before being revived on December 5, 2016, at the Kings Theatre in Brooklyn, New York with a holiday theme and achieved its highest ratings in over a decade.

I Belong to You (Il Ritmo della Passione) song by Eros Ramazzotti and Anastacia

"I Belong to You " is a duet by Italian singer Eros Ramazzotti and American singer Anastacia, released as the second single from Ramazzotti's eleventh studio album, Calma apparente (2005), and the third from Anastacia's first greatest hits album, Pieces of a Dream (2005). It was met with commercial success in mainland Europe particularly Germany, peaking at number 1 and becoming the 9th biggest selling song of the year. It also topped the singles chart in Italy and Switzerland and charted inside the top five in several other countries.

The Prayer (Celine Dion and Andrea Bocelli song) 1999 single by Céline Dion and Andrea Bocelli

"The Prayer" is a popular song written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager, Alberto Testa and Tony Renis. The song was originally recorded in two solo versions for the 1998 film Quest for Camelot, in English by Canadian singer Celine Dion and in Italian by Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli. A duet between Dion and Bocelli later appeared on their respective studio albums, These Are Special Times (1998) and Sogno (1999), and was released as an airplay single on 1 March 1999. The song won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song and was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song in 1999 and a Grammy Award for Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals in 2000.

Lynn Davis (singer) American musician

Lynn Davis is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and record producer. She rose to prominence after joining The George Duke Band in 1977. During her time with the band, she sang lead vocals on some of their biggest hits: "I Want You for Myself," "Party Down," and "Reach Out." Under the guidance of Epic Records musician and mentor George Duke, Davis continued booking success by contributing background vocals and writing songs for many singers including Tracie Spencer, La Toya Jackson, Patrice Rushen, Anita Baker, and many other singers.

Vytautas Juozapaitis Lithuanian opera singer

Vytautas Juozapaitis is a Lithuanian singer (baritone), recipient of Lithuanian National Prize, a soloist of Lithuanian National Opera and Ballet Theatre and Kaunas State Musical Theatre, a professor of Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre and a docent of Vilnius College of Higher Education, and a television personality. He has performed in many international venues and is considered the most famous contemporary Lithuanian baritone.

Humberto Gatica American record producer

Humberto Gatica is a Chilean-born American record producer, music mixer, audio engineer and a long-time collaborator with producer David Foster. He is a 16-time Grammy Award Winner.

Fernando Otero Composer- Pianist- Vocalist

Fernando Otero is a Grammy-award-winning Argentine pianist, vocalist, and composer.

Piano four hands type of piano duet involving two players playing the same piano simultaneously

Piano four hands is a type of piano duet involving two players playing the same piano simultaneously. A duet with the players playing separate instruments is generally referred to as a piano duo.

Giacomo Orefice was an Italian composer.

Violin Sonata (Strauss) musical composition by Richard Strauss

The Violin Sonata in E-flat major, Op. 18 was written by Richard Strauss between 1887 and 1888. Although not considered a milestone in violin literature, it is frequently performed and recorded. It is noted for its lyrical beauty and its technical demands made on both violinist and pianist.

Misha Geller composer

Michael Lazarevich "Misha" Geller was a Russian viola player and composer.

Cecilia Maria Barthélemon was an English singer, composer, pianist, and organist. She was the daughter of Maria Barthélemon, née Mary (Polly) Young, and François-Hippolyte Barthélemon. She published sonatas and other compositions.

Concert residency series of concerts only performed at one location

A concert residency is a series of concerts, similar to a concert tour, but only performed at one location. An artist who performs on a concert residency is called a resident performer. Concert residencies have been the staple of the Las Vegas Strip for decades, pioneered by singer-pianist Liberace in the 1940s and Frank Sinatra with the Rat Pack in the 1950s.

Janine Reding was a Belgian pianist and pedagogue.

Grigor Palikarov Bulgarian conductor

Grigor Palikarov is a Bulgarian conductor, composer, pianist, music educator and member of MENSA.

References

  1. Christensen, T. (1999). "Four-Hand Piano". Journal of the American Musicological Society, 52(2) 255–298
  2. Miller, H.-M. (1943). The Earliest Keyboard Duets. The Musical Quarterly , 29(4), 438–457.
  3. Tilmouth, Michael. "Duet". Grove Music Online. Retrieved 2014-10-12.
  4. "The Making of Queen and David Bowie's 1981 Hit "Under Pressure": Demos, Studio Sessions & More". www.openculture.com. Retrieved 2015-01-10.