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Discuss the extent to which the Gabrieli can be understood as an example of the new Baroque style

In ecclesiis has distinct features from both the late Renaissance and new Baroque style. It was published in 1615, after Gabrieli’s death, and would have been composed during the transition period between the two styles. Here are some examples of how the piece can be seen as both;First impressions of In ecclesiis would provide the idea of a Renaissance styled work. This is due to the plainchant, stepwise motion in the counter tenor part in bars 1-3. However there is also use of ostinato starting in bar 3 of the bass suggesting the new style of baroque.Another very Baroque feature in this work is the use of 14 parts and a basso continuo. The combination of solo voices alongside a choir and a group of instruments is a very obvious feature which is defined as Baroque. The grouping of solo voices with a continuo bass which is heard in the first few bars of the piece is a texture created in the early Baroque period called monody.Often the singers would be placed in different parts of the building, which would divide the choir called ‘cori spezzati’ which could create antiphony. There is antiphonal use of the instrumental and choral groups in bars 62-65, a late Renaissance feature of the piece.In bars 79-94 there are multiple switches between duple and triple time as well as a clear metre, again a Renaissance feature.Harmonically the piece can be seen as a Baroque new style as it uses chromaticism freely which leads to unusual harmonies (augmented or diminished chords) such as the augmented triad on beat 5 in bar 31. Unconventional dissonances such as leaps to sevenths which do not resolve downwards by step, *****which can be seen at bar 108 beat 4 in the counter tenor part. There is also use of unrelated chords, dramatising and pointing out important words in the text, such as in bar 108-109, where the text ‘deus’ (God) is emphasised by falling in thirds between unrelated chords. A harmonic feature which regularly appears in Baroque works are sequences which can be seen in this piece also at bars 13-19 between the bass solo and bass continuo. There is also a circle of fifths starting at bar 110, which was very popular in the Baroque era.However there are unstable thirds and sevenths in the piece such as the one in bars 10-12 , where the third of the chord is raised. At bar 107 – 108 there is a false relation (the F sharp to F natural), and a tierce de picardie is used in the final cadence, these are Renaissance features which can be seen in modal music particularly. Another Renaissance feature is the use of imitation at 115-117, between the counter tenor and tenor parts.In conclusion the piece does have many late Renaissance features such as an antiphonal texture in parts, however there are many more prominent features indicating that it is strongly rooted in the new Baroque style. Therefore Gabrieli can be seen as one of the founders of the new Baroque style, leading to the Baroque era, which blossomed less then a century after this work was published.

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