Glossary

 

Allemande

An Allemande is a stately dance originating in the 16th-century but which regained popularity in the 18th-century, becoming highly stylised. The music is in 4/4 time. In instrumental music an Allemande was a standard movement, most likely the first, of a Suite.

Minuet

A Minuet is a stately dance in 3/4 time. A dance for two, it was particularly popular in the 18th-century. 

This short video shows how to dance a Minuet.

 

Whilst it may be helpful to imagine couples dancing, we can't assume that all Minuets were written to accompany dancers, but rather have the feel of a minuet. Though the dance was stately and mannered at a steady tempo, some Minuets, especially the Italian influenced ones, work well at a faster, racier tempo.  A good example of this would be the Minuetto by Jean Baptiste Loeillet (ABRSM Grade 5, 2019 & 2020). With the immense popularity of the dance, it is not surprising that composers incorporated Minuets as movements within larger works such as symphonies, quartets and suites.

Rigaudon

A Rigaudon is a lively dance usually in 2 time (though perhaps sometimes notated in 4).