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Encyclopedia > Gavotte
A gavotte dance in Brittany, France, 1878
A gavotte dance in Brittany, France, 1878

The gavotte (also gavot or gavote) originated as a French folk dance, taking its name from the Gavot people of the Pays de Gap region of Dauphiné, where the dance originated. It is notated in 4/4 or 2/2 time and is of moderate tempo. The distinctive rhythmic feature of the original gavotte is that phrases begin in the middle of the bar; that is, in either 4/4 or 2/2 time, the phrases begin on the third quarter note of the bar, creating a half-measure upbeat, as illustrated below: Image File history File links Gavotte_Dance. ... Image File history File links Gavotte_Dance. ... Folk dancers in Prague Folk dance is a term used to describe a large number of dances, mostly of European origin, that tend to share the following attributes: They were originally danced in about the 19th century or earlier (or are, in any case, not currently copyrighted); Their performance is... Flag of the Dauphiné Dauphiné is a former province in southeastern France, roughly corresponding to the present départements of the Isère, Drôme, and Hautes-Alpes. ... This article does not cite its references or sources. ... The first two measures of Mozarts Sonata IX, which indicates the tempo as Andante grazioso and the metronome marking as = 120. Andante redirects here. ... In musical terminology, a bar or measure is a segment of time defined as a given number of beats of a given duration. ... In music, a quarter note (American) or crotchet (Commonwealth) is played for one quarter of the duration of a whole note. ...

J.-M. Guilcher’s study of the gavotte in Brittany (1963) revealed great variety in modern practice, especially in the type of steps used, floor patterns and formations and musical accompaniment. Gavottes in some areas are accompanied by singing, with a soloist alternating either with a group or with another soloist; in other areas gavottes are accompanied by instruments such as the violin, drum, bagpipe or a kind of shawm. Image File history File links Gavotte_rhythm. ... Brittany has an expansive coastline Flag of Brittany (Gwenn-ha-du) Historical province of Brittany région of Bretagne, see Bretagne. ... The shawm was a Renaissance musical instrument of the woodwind family, made in Europe from the late 13th century until the 17th century. ...

Unlike the branle, in which sideways motion was achieved by the dancer’s continually bringing the feet together, the gavotte required crossing of the feet twice in each step pattern, and each step was followed by a hop. Various pantomimic motions, such as the choice of a leader for the next dance, usually formed part of a gavotte performance. A branle (also bransle, pronounced brawl) is a 16th century French dance style which moves mainly from side to side, and is performed by couples in either a line or a circle. ... This article is about Mime as an art form. ...

The gavotte in Baroque music

The gavotte became popular in the court of Louis XIV where Jean-Baptiste Lully was the leading court composer. Consequently several other composers of the Baroque period incorporated the dance as one of many optional additions to the standard instrumental suite of the era. The examples in suites and partitas by Johann Sebastian Bach are best known. When present in the Baroque suite, the gavotte is often played after the sarabande and before the gigue, along with other optional dances such as minuet, bourrée, rigaudon, and passepied. Sun King redirects here. ... Jean-Baptiste de Lully, originally Giovanni Battista di Lulli (November 28, 1632 – March 22, 1687), was an Italian-born French composer, who spent most of his life working in the court of Louis XIV of France. ... Baroque music describes an era and a set of styles of European classical music which were in widespread use between approximately 1600 and 1750 (see Dates of classical music eras for a discussion of the problems inherent in defining the beginning and end points). ... It has been suggested that Suite_de_Danses be merged into this article or section. ... Places in which Bach resided throughout his life Johann Sebastian Bach (pronounced ) (21 March 1685 O.S. – 28 July 1750 N.S.) was a prolific German composer and organist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought... In music, the sarabande (It. ... The gigue or giga is a lively baroque dance in a compound metre such as 3/8, 6/8, 6/4, 9/8 or 12/16. ... A minuet, sometimes spelled menuet, is a social dance of French origin for two persons, usually in 3/4 time. ... The bourree was a dance common in Auvergne and Biscay in Spain in the 17th century, danced in quick double time, somewhat resembling the gavotte. ... Rigaudon, rigadon, or rigadoon. ... The paspy (French: passepied - passing feet) is a 17th and 18th century dance that originated in Brittany. ...

The gavotte in the Baroque period is typically in binary form. A notable exception is the rondo form of the Gavotte from Bach's Partita No. 3 in E Major for solo violin, BWV 1006. This article does not cite its references or sources. ... a rondo is played between episode which are played by non solo people Rondo, and its French equivalent rondeau, is a word that has been used in music in a number of ways, most often in reference to a musical form, but also in reference to a character-type that...

Later manifestations

Later composers, particularly in the nineteenth century, began to write gavottes to begin on the downbeat rather than on the half-measure upbeat. The famous Gavotte in D by Gossec is such an example, as is the Gavotte in Massenet's Manon. A gavotte also occurrs in the second act of The Gondoliers by Gilbert and Sullivan. Downbeat can have several meanings: // In Music Theory In music performance and music theory, the downbeat is also the first beat of a measure in music. ... François Joseph Gossec, by Antoine Vestier. ... Jules (Émile Frédéric) Massenet (May 12, 1842 – August 13, 1912) was a French composer. ... The Gondoliers, or The King of Barataria, is a Savoy Opera, with music by Arthur Sullivan and libretto by W. S. Gilbert. ... Sir W. S. Gilbert Sir Arthur Sullivan Librettist W. S. Gilbert (1836–1911) and composer Arthur Sullivan (1842–1900) collaborated on a series of fourteen comic operas in Victorian England between 1871 and 1896. ...

In the musical My Fair Lady (1956), the number entitled "Ascot Gavotte" does away completely with the traditional rhythmic pattern by having a quarter-note upbeat in the phrases while retaining the mildly march-like stateliness of the dance to characterize the stilted, high-society world of the attendants at the horserace. In contrast, "The Venice Gavotte" from the American operetta Candide (from the same year) presents the original half-bar-upbeat rhythm of this particular dance type. The gavotte from Rodgers and Hammerstein's Cinderella is somewhat of a blend, having some phrases beginning on the upbeat and some beginning on the downbeat. The Fantasticks was the longest-running musical in history. ... The original poster for the Broadway production of the show designed by Al Hirschfeld My Fair Lady is a 1956 musical theater production with lyrics and book by Alan Jay Lerner and music by Frederick Loewe. ... Year 1956 (MCMLVI) was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Stars and Stripes Forever by John Philip Sousa is considered amongst the greatest marches ever written. ... Operetta (literally, little opera) is a performance art-form similar to opera, though it generally deals with less serious topics. ... Candide is a comic operetta by Leonard Bernstein, based on the novella of the same name by Voltaire. ... Rodgers (left) and Hammerstein (right), with Irving Berlin (middle) and Helen Tamiris, watching auditions at the St. ... Rodgers and Hammersteins Cinderella is the name of a musical written for television by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II based upon the fairy tale, Cinderella. ...

References in popular culture

  • Carly Simon's song You're So Vain includes the lyric "You had one eye in the mirror as you watched yourself gavotte", in this context it can be taken to mean a pretentious or egotistical style of dancing.
  • A gavotte was written by Giovanni Battista Martini, an 18th century Italian musician.
  • The Stephen Sondheim musical "Sunday in the Park With George" uses the word "gavotte" as a satirical device in the otherwise irregular, non-steadily rhythmical, song "It's Hot Up Here" to start the second Act, "We're stuck up here in this gavotte."
  • Geneticist W.D. Hamilton in his paper entitled "Gamblers since life began: barnacles, aphids, elms." in the Quarterly Review of Biology (1975) made an earnest attempt at wit by referring to the drilled formality of the mechanisms of individual reproduction as "the gavotte of chromosomes".
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  Results from FactBites:
The Case of the Gavotte (872 words)
Laure notes that the Gavotte was danced at the end of the Bransles, but that the steps were so common and so well known that it would have been uesless to write of them in detail.
Rameau noted that the Gavotte of his day came from Lyonnois and Dauphiny, so it is likely that what we are dealing with in the Baroque Gavotte is a regional variant which has by luck managed to become the dominant form.
She notes that it may be difficult for the beginner to know whether the movements are being done on the correct beat, and an outside eye may be necessary to confirm when the movements are being done correctly.
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