Four-Part Harmony - SATB and Keyboard Flashcards Preview

AP Music Theory > Four-Part Harmony - SATB and Keyboard > Flashcards

Flashcards in Four-Part Harmony - SATB and Keyboard Deck (13):

four part writing

- when looking at it, you can four separate parts
- register for each part
- bass is in bass staff primarily
- tenor is in the upper bass staff but go above the staff frequently
- alto is in and below the treble staff
- soprano is in and sometime above the treble staff
- look at the spacing between the parts (intervals get confusing when looking at parts that cross staves, such as alto and tenor)


when writing SATB music there are 5 concepts to keep in mind

- notation
- range
- spacing
- voice crossing (watch between the alto and tenor voice in particular)
- voice doublings



- use the grand staff
- Treble clef:
- soprano parts written with note stems up
- alto parts with not stems down
- Bass clef:
- tenor parts written with note stems up
- bass parts with stems down
- occasionally there will have pitches shared. the note is either side by side (such as whole notes, since they do not have a stem) or one note with two stems to mark both parts



- SATB settings use somehwat standard ranges for each part. these are determined by the average singing range for each part. they are a little flexible but should be used almost all of the time
- soprano: C4 to G5
- alto: G3 to D5
- tenor: C3 to G4
- bass: E2 to D4
- basically an octave and a fifth with the exception of bass
- some singers fall in between two of these groups, such as baritones and mezzo-sopranos



- 4-part chords sound best if the intervals between the three upper adjacent parts is an octave or less (watch especially between tenor and alto voice)
- the interval between the tenor and bass may be larger than an octave. lower parts sound muddy when voice too closely together so larger intervals between tenor and bass is preferred
- also be careful about voice crossing as well


voice crossing

- don't do it
- there are moments that this rule can be broken because it can create an interesting effect. but there must be a reason why it's broken. as of now, learn how to follow these rules and understand when to break them


voice doubling

- we have four voices but sometime only three notes to choose from, some voices will share a pitch
- never double an accidental or tendency tone
- notes that can be doubled:
- the root of the chord
- try to double the soprano unless it has an accidental or leading tones
- if bass has a fifth, then double the bass tone
- diminished chords, we double the bass or the third of the chord (because these chords are usualyl in first inversion)


writing for keyboard

- the main difference for keyboard writing is that most people have ten fingers and less limited ranges
- keyboard is an excellent setting for 4-part harmonization
- small changes are made to fit the nature of the key board performance
- divide four parts into two hands
- right hand stems are up
- let hand stems are down
- many times the tenor voice is moved to the treble clef staff. giving three voices to the right hand and the bass part in the left hand
- to harmonize a melody, the melody can be played in the right hand while the chords are played in the left hand
- or instead of chords, have arpeggios or alberti bass
- spacing between pitches now become physical considerations
- normal range or normal hand is an octave range
- three notes per hand is common, four notes is possible
- be careful of spacing of more than a tenth between the hands


when writing four-part harmony, five basic concepts must be considered. are they notation, range, spacing, voice crossing, and doubling?

- yes


from the lowest to the highest voice, name the four voices in four-part harmony

- bass; tenor; alto; soprano


four-part harmony is notated on the _______ staff. these voices have stems down _______. these voices have stems up___________

- grand; bass and alto; tenor and soprano


in four-part harmony, most of the chords will be triads. what pitch should be doubled to complete the chord in: root position_______; 1st inversion__________; 2nd inversion always the_______

- root; soprano; bass


what pitches should never be doubled in four-part harmony?

- leading tone; root; tendency tone

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