While Guido d’Arezzo lived in Arezzo, he was commissioned by Bishop Teldad of Arezzo to produce a music manual – a book - for the training of singers. This book was called the Micrologus. The book covered a wide variety of topics, including the correct methods for chanting, information on polyphonic music, melody & harmony, and many more topics.
One of the new methods of teaching music that Guido d’Arezzo developed is called solmization, which is the mnemonic device we use to sing notes. Look at the example below and see how we use solmization to sing do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti-do.
Solmization has changed a lot since Guido d’Arezzo’s time. His book the Micrologus suggested they sing it ut-re-mi-fa-sol-la-si-do.
The Guidonian Hand
The Guidonian hand is something that we aren’t sure Guido d’Arezzo invented himself, but it is named after him. The Guidonian hand is a way to remember the names of notes by looking at your hand. Look at the example below.
Guido d’Arezzo is also widely thought to be the inventor of staff notation. Staff notation is something we have all seen before. It is the five lines that notes go on. Without Guido d'Arezzo we might not have the same way of reading music that we are so familiar with.
With all the knowledge that we gained from Guido d’Arezzo, it’s no wonder how important he is. From inventing staff notation, developing solmization, and everything else he taught us, we wouldn’t be nearly as far along with him!