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Milton, John

Arr. Olson, Gary


  • Ensemble: Brass Quintet
  • Genre: Renaissance
  • Grade: 4
  • Duration: 2.0 minutes
  • Catalog Number: DB-CAN0120

Milton’s Fantasia is an example of a Seventeenth Century musical form that features imitative counterpoint
within a very free, unstructured framework. As Thomas Morley described it, “The most prinicipal and chiefest
kind of music which is made without a ditty (words) is the Fantasy, that is when a musician taketh a point
(subject) at his pleasure and wresteth and turneth it as he list, making either much or little of it according as
shall seem best in his own conceit. In this may more art be shown than in any other music, because the
composer is tied to nothing, but that he may add, diminish, and alter at his pleasure.” The Fantasia is a
relatively light style of chamber music originally written for a consort of viols, although other instruments such
as cornets, shawms, and sackbuts were often substituted according to the custom of the day..

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