Josquin Desprez Analysis

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Josquin Desprez is known as the most inspirational and influential composers from the Renaissance period. He was born in Belgium and eventually moved to Italy, where he worked for powerful and important people. Desprez’s contributions were very significant for music, for example, his most popular composition was the motet Aver Maria...Virgo serena, in which the musical structure combines elements from the Medieval and Renaissance period. Hence, he employs these elements throughout the whole piece that are displayed in his over-all style, form, melody, harmony, color, orchestration and texture. Furthermore, his attributions were distinguished among other composers from his period, because he employs different music techniques that inspired and…show more content…
People from the Renaissance was so captivated and delighted by this motet, that it became one of the first motets ever printed and published, regardless the musical elements from the Medieval period. The lyrics were written in Latin and performed by four voices. Desprez created this composition while he was working at the courts in Italy and France. In addition, this motet represents a symbol of beauty and elegance that were some of the characteristics used by composers in the Renaissance. Through this motet, Dezpres provides an example of inspiration in which composers incorporated and adopted classical values from the Medieval period into their work. For instance, he introduces the piece by using a polyphonic technique that was used in the Medieval period, and homorhythmic form that combines high voices with the low ones by moving together rhythmically. Also, He brings classic work such as the “Gregorian Chants” into this piece and combines them with the stylistic ideas of the Renaissance…show more content…
The opening starts with four imitation voices using a polyphonic technique, and the rest of the song involves a pair of voices (duos) in a homorhythmic texture. Also “the relatively few full-voice textures retain the traditional framework of superius and tenor” . Desprez limited the voice pairs “to a single layout, always pitting the two upper voices against the two lower, and never, as they do, joining superius with tenor and altus with bassus or exploring still further combinations.” . In addition, Desprez switched from “duplet to triple meter and the tempo momentarily becomes more animated” . However, the song goes back to duplet and the sound becomes more peaceful and relaxing as the song ends. For example, in “Dominus tecum” the voices join with the entry voices in order to incorporate a second melody. Also, in “Ave, cuius conception” the lower voices imitated the duets of the high voices, and in “Virgo serena” the four voices join all together to sing this phrase and they end with a powerful
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