Music 104A: Advanced Modal Counterpoint


  • Leech-Wilkinson, Daniel, Machaut's Mass (Clarendon Paperbacks, Oxford, 1992) contains a detailed analysis and the full score of the Notre Dame Mass.
  • The Oxford Book of Tudor Anthems (Oxford University Press, 1978), a com- pendium of masterpieces by Tallis, Byrd, etc al.
  • Desprez, Josquin, xeroxed examples from masses and motets.
  • Palestrina, Giovanni Pierluigi da, Masses and Motets (Dover Press).
  • Suggested readings excerpted from: Companion to Medieval and Renaissance Music, (Ed. Knighton & Fallows).
  • Anthologies:
    Anthology of Renaissance Music, Ed. Atlas, (W.W> Norton & Co., 1998).
    Examples of Grgorian Chant & Sacred Music of the 16th Century, Ed. Soderland & Scott (Waveland Press. Inc, 1971).
  • Counterpoint reference: A Plain & Easy Introduction to Practical Music, Thomas Morley.
  • Click here for a good discography of Renaissance Music (based on Norton Anthology).

    Click here for a list of CD's from Reale's collection

    Course meets twice each week for 2 hours per session. The focus will be on the evolving contrapuntal styles from the 14th to the 16th centuries and their origins in the Church Modes. The assignments will be balanced between analysis and style composition.

  • Week1 (Jan. 12, 14): The basics
    The standard nonchord tones as defined in the three style periods, as well as a general discussion of perfect and imperfect consonances and dissonances in the various styles.
    Palestrina as the end of a style.
  • Week2 (Jan. 19, 21): Machaut
    Read Leech-Wilkinson, Chapter I, a background to the style. Begin Chapter 1 (2.1, Formal Choices) and study an overview of the work.
    Analysis of Kyrie I of Machut's Mass.
  • Week3 (Jan. 26, 28): Josquin
    Read Leech-Wilkinson, 2.12, The fourteenth-century tradition.
    Begin an overview of the Flemish style with appropriate examples from motets of Josquin.
    Analysis of Kyrie II and Gloria, with comparisons to masses of Dufay, Josquin, Palestrina.
  • Week4 (Feb. 2, 4): First comparisons
    Take the dissonance treatment of the Machaut Josquin, Palestrina, and Tallis and do a differential analysis.
    Begin study of counterpoint from excerpts of Morley text.
  • Week5 (Feb. 9, 11): The English Masters
    An overview of the 16 century style through examples of Tudor Anthems (Lamentations of Tallis and examples from Byrd and Gibbons).
    Midterm exam on Thursday, Feb. 11.
    Review of Techniques of imitation (Click on to see).
  • Week6 (Feb. 16, 18): Palestrina
    Begin an introduction to the composer's work through a comparison of motets with the English examples.
  • Week7 (Feb 23, 25): Palestrina's L'Homme Arme Mass
    Use the Gloria of this Mass to compare with those of Josquin and Machaut.
  • Week8 (Mar. 2, 4): Style composition choices
    Two workshop classes which concentrate on composition in the various composers' styles. Emplasis will be on the comparative treatment of the same text by the different composers.
  • Week9 (Mar. 9, 11): Style composition rewrites
    A second look at the examples, also the large analytical paper will be due.
  • Week10 (Mar. 16, 18): Review
    Extensive technical and aural review of the pieces analyzed during the quarter. All style compositions will be due on the date ofthe second class of this week.

  • A comprehensive final examination will be given to test the students' knowledge of repertoire and techniques.

    Updated: February 9, 1999.