Understanding Chamber Music

1 day, 9:30 am - 4:30 pm

Chamber music

Chamber music is one of the most intimate forms of classical music. It combines the wealth and richness of classical music structures with the intimacy of being able to see each performer, and hear what each one is playing. This music appreciation course explores the structures and development of chamber music, and the great composers who contributed to it, including Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert. We will listen to some of the great pieces of chamber music, and explore what makes them wonderful. No musical knowledge is necessary.

Course Outline

Topics we will explore

  • What is chamber music?
  • What instruments play chamber music?
  • The structures of chamber music
  • The rise of chamber music
  • Haydn: Father of the String Quartet
  • Chamber music of the Classical period
  • Beethoven's chamber music
  • The chamber music of Schubert
  • Chamber music in the Romantic period
  • Sonata Form
  • Theme and Variations
  • Rondo Form

Music we will listen to

  • Schubert: “The Trout” Piano Quintet
  • Haydn: String Quartet op.76 No.3 “Emperor”
  • Haydn: String Quartet op. 33 no. 2, “The Joke”
  • Bach: Brandenburg Concertos
  • Mozart: Clarinet Quintet
  • Mozart: String Quintet in E flat major K. 614
  • Mozart and Beethoven: Violin Sonatas
  • Beethoven: Piano Trio op. 70, “Ghost”
  • Beethoven: The late string quartets
  • Schumann: Piano Quintet
  • Brahms: Clarinet Quintet, Piano Quartet Op. 60
  • Chopin: Cello Sonata in G Minor, op. 65
  • Ravel: String Quartet in F

Comments about Susan's courses

“It was the content I was looking for. Variation of teaching methods, mixture of audio and visual. Nicely paced. Learnt a lot from the entertaining day. Like the music and analysis. Gives you an insight into how a musician listens” - Keren, Fairlight

“Very enjoyable. Enjoyed the music very much with the explanation on the screen” - Barbara, Woolwich

“Comprehensive and well designed. Enjoyed anecdotes. Good pace” - Max, Pyrmont

“Excellent structured content moving chronologically through the main periods of musical history with composers highlighted. Susan is extremely knowledgeable in this field with an energetic and convivial teaching presentation. She is passionate about her subject. Excellent use of audiovisual aids maintains high relevance and interest” - John, Fairlight

“Content very full but relevant. Excellent technical devices, following music with explanatory notes etc. Good analysis of the periods and composers covered, and helpful portraits and pictures” - Nick, Woolwich

“Excellent. Interesting and entertaining content, good flow in teaching, interested in class questions. Good examples of music. Understandable. Always good teaching from Susan” - Neil, Marrickville

More about Susan Deas

Susan has been teaching adult music appreciation courses for over 10 years, through Sydney University's Centre for Continuing Education and WEA Sydney. She has a Bachelor of Music with a major in performance (piano) and musicology, a Master of Music Studies (Studio Pedagogy), a Bachelor of Arts (Communications), and the A.Mus.A in Musicianship. She teaches piano and musicianship to adults and children, and performs on the piano and organ in various venues around Sydney.

More about Susan's qualifications

Read what people have said about Susan's other courses

Susan's other music courses