Concept

Serenade

Summary
In music, a serenade (ˌsɛrəˈneɪd; also sometimes called a serenata, from the Italian) is a musical composition or performance delivered in honour of someone or something. Serenades are typically calm, light pieces of music. The term comes from the Italian word , which itself derives from the Latin . Sense influenced by Italian sera "evening," from Latin sera, fem. of serus "late." In the oldest usage, which survives in informal form to the present day, a serenade is a musical greeting performed for a lover, friend, person of rank or other person to be honored. The classic usage would be from a lover to his lady love through a window. It was considered an evening piece, one to be performed on a quiet and pleasant evening, as opposed to an aubade, which would be performed in the morning. The custom of serenading in this manner began in the Medieval era, and the word "serenade" as commonly used in current English is related to this custom. Music performed followed no one particular form, except that it was typically sung by one person accompanying himself on a portable instrument, most likely a guitar, lute or other plucked instrument. Works of this type also appeared in later eras, but usually in a context that referred specifically to a past time, such as arias in an opera (there is a famous example in Mozart's Don Giovanni). Carl Maria von Weber composed his serenade for voice and guitar, "Horch'! Leise horch', Geliebte!" (1809). In the Baroque era, a serenata—as the form was called since it occurred most frequently in Italy and Vienna—was a typically celebratory or eulogistic dramatic cantata for two or more singers and orchestra, performed outdoors in the evening by artificial light. Some composers of this type of serenade include Alessandro Stradella, Alessandro Scarlatti, Johann Joseph Fux, Johann Mattheson, and Antonio Caldara. Often these were large-scale works performed with minimal staging, intermediate between a cantata and an opera.
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