An Introduction to Choral Music

While contemporary music in the form of pop and rock is popular, not very many people have heard of or even heard choral music for that matter.

It shouldn’t be hard to ascertain why this is so considering how MTV has pushed classical music into the foreground. With that said, here is a little information about choral music.


For starters, and in contrast to contemporary music, choral music is sung in parts and by a choir. This is usually in two or more parts and usually determines the size of the choir as well.


Of course, this also depends on the music written where the number of singers can be a few dozens or even be substantially bigger so as to accommodate the Gustav Mahler’s “Symphony of a Thousand”.


It was not until the 14th century when singers improved their music theory knowledge, and with the increase in support for choral music, many works were created with Johannes Ockeghem being one of the most influential composers of this era.


Most composers wrote music that had singers sing in four parts: soprano, alto, tenor and bass. Each of these voices while sounding different were considered equally important and added a richer depth and quality to the music that you will ever find in contemporary music.


It must be said that the time when choral music developed the most was in the 15th century where several Latin Masses were written. Other forms of choral music also written included the anthem, cantata, a capella, oratorio and motet.