Continuing Early Notation with Annette Bauer

Early Notation with Annette Bauer - 15th century music from MS Oxford Misc. 213
Wednesdays 5-6:15pm EST: September 8, 15, 22, 29
Register here!

Come spend some time with us in the wonderful world of original notation, specifically mensural notation, the system primarily used during the 14th-16th centuries. Being able to read from the original greatly enhances our understanding of how the music we love works and can give new insights for our performance practice. One might compare this process to how reading a work of literature in its original language reveals a world of nuances hidden in even the best of translations.

After having spent the first 4 sessions in the 16th century, we are moving backwards in history, and are now getting ready to explore the notational and musical world of the 15th century. This upcoming session will focus on pieces from an important early 15th century manuscript source now held at Oxford Library, named Oxford MS. Canon. Misc. 213.

You can read about the manuscript here and access image files:

This source contains over 300 compositions - both secular and religious - by 15th century composers such as Du Fay, Binchois, and their contemporaries. In addition to familiarizing ourselves with the visual qualities of this particular source, we will also study triple mensuration (tempus imperfectum prolatio maior), review familiar mensurations and practice ligatures and historical clef reading.

Sessions are 75 min in length and are held via zoom. Students are able to ask live questions during the sessions. Facsimile, handouts, and recordings will be provided to be used for your individual practice at home between sessions.

Open to all instrumentalists and singers, class pitch is 440. All levels welcome - basic abilities on your instrument/voice and basic music-reading skills are a prerequisite. This class is specifically geared towards students who already have at least completed the introductory notation class or have equivalent experience. If you don’t have any prior early notation experience at all but would still be interested in joining the class, please feel free to contact us.

left: Perotin 12th century
right: Squarcialupi Manuscript 14th century