Room 10

This time we approach another popular form that was a dance, called the minuet. It started off as a rather formal courtly dance, and its distingushing feature was that it was in a triple meter. If you can count to three, you can nail the minuet. Here's a famous minuet from the 17th century by Luigi Boccherini.

The minuet hung around in music for a long time, and later on one of the greatest composers of all time, Ludwig van Beethoven wrote his own minuet and it became the most well-known example of the dance.

Here's one more piece that could have been a minuet from the mid 19th century. It was arranged by a composer who was born in New Orleans in 1829. He became the greatest touring pianist of his time. Between 1862 and 1865, it is estimated that he traveled 95,000 miles by train and gave 1100 concerts! When he died, his body ended up in Brooklyn. (Isn't that where all bodies go?)

The composer's name was Louis Moreau Gottschalk. The portion that is based upon "The Star-Spangled Banner" sounds like a minuet.

After hearing that, you're probably in shock, but you know, when played at that speed by a quiet piano, the Star-Spangled Banner might be considered a minuet. It's a concert paraphrase that Gottschalk called The Union and he wrote it in 1862.

So you see, music can be fun!

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