Performance Practice and Repertoires

The Trouvère Chanson and its Performance

6 sessions - Self-paced

Course Description

The trouvère chanson is one of the most important and exquisite poetic and musical creations of the Middle Ages. It first developed from the troubadour tradition of Southern France (in langue doc), but rapidly grew into a distinct and diversified repertoire responding to its specific linguistic, politically, social, historical and cultural context. The trouvère chanson found itself at home in the courts and cities of northern France, and was practiced by both aristocrats and the middle class. The survival of a large amount of chansons copied with melodies and descriptions about their performance help us to reach conclusions about the repertoire and its performance conventions.

This online course offers a comprehensive study of the trouvére chanson focusing on an examination of its principal composers and musical sources, its main poetic-musical structures and genres, its historical and cultural context, and its performance practice (vocality, rhetoric, rhythm, ornamentation, and instrumental accompaniment).

In this hands-on course, students will:


Analysis of the poetic-musical structures of the trouvère chanson


Exploration of the Grand chant and other genres


Interpretation of the music notation of the chanson


Discussion about the most important composers and their pieces


Study of the performance practice of the trouvére chanson including a discussion about voice production, expression, rhythm, and instrumental accompaniment

Dr. Mauricio MolinaInstructor:
Dr. Mauricio Molina



Sep 18, 2023 – Jan 15, 2024
6 sessions – Self-paced



Price 1.5 creds

1.5 credit ECTS: 320€


English - Spanish


Open to musicians, musicologists, and people interested in Medieval music and the Middle Ages in general (with or without experience playing medieval musical instruments)


Session 1 | The Poetic and Musical Construction of the Chanson

Session 2 | Sources, Notation, and Rhythmic Theories

Session 3 | High and Low Style Chansons: The Theory of Register

Session 4 | Performing the Chanson I: Singing

Session 5 | Performing the Chanson II: Musical Instruments

Session 6 | The Popular Chanson: Pastourelle, Rondeau, and Hybrid Song

Teaching Methodology

This course will be comprised of:

    • 6 tutorial videos of 20-35 minutes each (total 3.5 hours)
    • 6 recorded lectures of 45 minute each (total 4.5 hours)
    • 3 biweekly live Q&A sessions of 1hour and 15 minutes each (total 3.5 hours) conducted through the course. The sessions will be recorded so that students can access them at any time.
    • Downloadable materials and links to additional resources

Schedules and assignments:

    • The course is self-paced.
    • The majority of pre-recorded video lessons, lectures, and study materials will be posted on the first day of the term.
    • Students will have access to all session and their materials until the last day of the term.
    • The student workload to review the materials and complete the assignments is approximately 6.25 hours per session
    • There will be some suggested deadlines to submit assignments
    • Homework will be accepted until a week before the end of the term
    • Students taking the course for credit must complete all assignments and class requirements

Technical Requirements

    • Broadband Internet connection / WIFI

    • External or internal webcam
    • External or internal microphone
    • Speakers or headphones
    • Possibility of printing downloaded materials
    • Possibility of scanning your assignments
    • Possibility of auto-recording (audio and video)

Enroll Now

Places are limited for each section, so sign up early.

The International Course of Medieval Music Besalú offers singers and instrumentalists the possibility of studying the repertoires of monodic and polyphonic music composed between the 11th and 13th centuries.

With the support of: