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Flashcards in Higher Concepts Deck (76):
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Retrograde

To go backwards. A melody or a section of music can be written/performed from the end to the beginning

1

Pavane and Galliard

A slow stately dance (2 beats in a bar), contrasted with a more lively dance (3 beats in a bar)

2

Mass

A sacred vocal work with 5 important parts. Look out for Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus and Agnus Dei

3

Antiphonal

Dialogue between voices or instruments- one group or voice answers the other. Stereo effect

4

Renaissance

Describes the music of 1450-1600. A "rebirth" of interest in classical times of the distant past

5

Motet

An unaccompanied vocal setting of religious words (usually in Latin). Polyphonic and written for four or five voices/parts

6

Ayre

A madrigal which often used a lute and solo voice

7

Mode

Before the idea of a key came to be accepted. The arrangement of tones and semitones are in a different order in each Mode. Can be used in Jazz music

8

Madrigal Proper

A through-composed madrigal using word painting

9

Consort

A group of instruments in the renaissance period. Can be broken or whole

10

Hemiola

A rhythmic device giving the impression of a piece of music changing from duple (2) or triple (3) time or vice versa

11

Ballett

A strophic madrigal with a "Fa la la" chorus

12

German Lied

German song in which the voice and piano play an equal part

13

Counter-Subject

In a fugue after the subject or answer is played, the continuation on that same instrument or voice is called the counter subject

14

Tone Row

An arrangement of the twelve notes of the octave which forms the basis of a composition (serialism). Each note is as important as another

15

Neo-Classical

Composers wanted to return to styles and structures of earlier period but continued with dissonant, tonal and even atonal harmonies.

16

Ripieno

When the whole orchestra play in a concerto grosso. The "filling"

17

Bridge

A link between two themes

18

Serial

A 20th century technique where the composer arranges 12 notes of the chromatic scale into any order of his/her choice.

19

Idée fixe/lietmotiv

A recurring theme which was used in the romantic period to represent an object or person.

20

Inversion

1. To be turned upside down
2. When the bass note in a chord is not the root. Eg 3rd or 5th in the bass

21

Suite

Group of dances written for one or more instruments

22

Nationalist

Where a composer deliberately aim to express strong feelings for his country in his music, or bring a distinctive flavour by which his nationality may be easily recognised.

23

Chaconne

Variations over a repeated chord progression.

24

Transition

A passage which leads from one well identified section of a piece of music to another

25

Plagal Cadence

A phrase ending which sounds complete. Goes from chord IV - I

26

Chorale Prelude

A popular type of piece for the organ based on a chorale melody. (German Hymn Tune)

27

Turn

An ornament which consists of four notes- The note above, the note itself, the note below and the note itself

28

Harmonic Minor

Scale which uses the same key signature as the relative major, but raises the 7th by a by a semitone

29

Passacaglia

Variations over a ground bass

30

Melodic Minor

Scale which shares the same key signature as its relative major but raises the 6th and 7th notes by a semitone on the way up, and similarly lowers them on the way down

31

Acciaccatura

An ornament which sounds like a crushed note played very quickly just before it

32

Appogiatura

An ornament which sounds like a leaning note. It takes half the value of the main note which follows it or two thirds of the value if the note is dotted

33

Mordent

An ornament which sounds the main note, the note above and then the main note again. An inverted mordent sounds the main note, the note below and then the main note again.

34

Tonal sequence

A pattern immediately repeated higher or lower and remaining in the same key (see sequence). A tonal sequence can also be identified if even one interval of the sequential phrase is different from the 1st phrase. A real sequence occurs if the intervals of the sequential phrase are exactly the same as the 1st phrase (see tonal answer)

35

Microtone

Any interval noticeably smaller than a semitone which may be found in the music of Eastern European countries and also Indian and Arabic music. 20th century composers are also known to have used them

36

Tri-tone

Interval of an augmented 4th. (Eg C-F or F-B) It is made up of 3 tones.

37

Interrupted Cadence

A phrase ending which sounds incomplete. An interrupted cadence is usually formed by the chords V-VI. (In the key of C major, chords G to A minor.) This is known also as the surprise cadence as the listener may be expecting V-I which has a more final sound.

38

Dominant 7th

Chord built on the dominant (5th) note of a key which adds the 7th note above its root. It is sometimes written as V7 or, in the key of C major, G7 (GBDF)

39

Diminished 7th

A chord consisting of three intervals of a minor 3rd built one on top of the other, the interval between the lover and top note being diminished 7th. This can be a very useful chord for modulation to distant keys.

40

Augmented chord

The chord is formed by a major triad in which the 5th degree is raised by a semitone.

41

Added 6th

Root, 3rd and 5th of the chord with 6th added. This is used frequently in jazz and popular music

42

Polytonality

The use of 2 or more keys played or sung at the same time. (eg. The melody may be in the key of C major whilst the accompaniment might be in E major. Many 20th century composers eg Bartok, Ives, Holst and Stravinsky used the device.

43

Irregular metres/Time changes

Often in modern or rhythmically based ethnic music, grouping of notes change, but the underlying pulse remains constant. Grouping of 2 and 3 produce irregular accents and metres. Sometimes composers in the 20th century would try to destroy the feeling of regular down beat by changing the time signature frequently. Stravinsky often used this technique, particularly in "Rite of String".

44

Three against two

One line of music may be playing quavers in groups of two whilst at the same time another line of music will be playing triplets. Other note values can be similarly used. See cross rhythms.

45

Augmentation

An increase in length of notes. The music will sound slower when imitated or repeated.

46

Diminution

A decrease in the length of notes. The music will sound faster when imitated or repeated.

47

Episode

A section of music linking 2 appearances of the same material. In fugue an episode is used as a modulating link between entries of the subject and is frequently based on fragments from the subject or counter-subject

48

Subject

The main theme in a composition, the main themes in sonata form or the fugue

49

Exposition

The 1st section of a movement in sonata form (exposition - development - recapitulation) or the 1st section of a fugue where each voice has played or sung at least one entry of a subject or answer

50

Real answer

If the intervals of the answer are exactly the same as the subject, the answer is real.

51

Heterophony

A melody being played in different ways at the same time. A strong feature of gamelan

52

Harmonics

The high eerie like sounds produced on a bowed string instrument by lightly touching the string at certain points. On a guitar these will sound "bell like"

53

Coloratura

The elaborate ornamentation of a melody (eg runs, scales, trills). Usually refers to a soprano voice and is often extemporised.

54

Stretto

Where voices or instruments enter very quickly one after the other, as in fugue. Each entry or part enters closely after the previous part thus adding tension and excitement.

55

Sprechgesang

A technique used in vocal music where the singer is required to use the voice in an expressive manner half way between singing and speaking. It appears in a no of pieces by Schöenberg and Berg (20th century)

56

Organised sound

The twentieth century composer Varese used this term instead of "music" to describe his compositions which discarded the elements of pitch, rhythm and harmony.

57

Ritornello

Return and refers to a main theme which was played by the orchestra at the beginning of a piece and returned after each solo section played by the concertina or soloist.

58

Tonal Answer

In a fugue after the subject is played the same tune appears in another voice or part in the dominant (5th higher or 4th lower). This is called an answer. If the intervals of the answer are not exactly the same as the subject, the answer is tonal.

59

Basso Continuo

This was a bass-line played by a low string instrument, such as the cello, which continued through the piece. Another player filled out the harmonies by playing chords on a harpsichord, organ or lute, called a continuo part. This was used in the Baroque period.

60

Sonata form

Sometimes known as 1st movement form. This term is used to describe the structure of many sonatas, symphonies and often overtures. It falls into 3 sections; exposition - development - recapitulation. The exposition introduces 2 contrasting themes in related keys. These are developed and heard again in the recapitulation, this time in the same key.

61

Jazz funk

A combination of jazz improvisation and the amplified instruments and character of rock

62

Musique Concrete

Recorded natural sounds which are transformed using simple editing techniques such as cutting and reassembling, playing backwards, slowing down and speeding up.

63

Late romantic

Music of the late 19th century and early 20th century which retains the dramatic intensity of earlier 19th century music. The music is characterised by the use of vast instrumental forces, increased chromaticism and large scale composition. Composers included Wagner, Mahler and Strauss

64

Plainchant

Plainchant and plainsong is the earliest music we know. It was sung in the church (sacred) and consists of a single melody line sung without accompaniment (a cappella). This chant is in free rhythm and uses modal scales.

65

Madrigal

These were regarded as the secular counterpart to the motet. It is a vocal composition for several voices, usually a cappella. The words are always secular (non-sacred), but can be serious as well as light-hearted. In England there came to be three types of madrigal: the "madrigal proper", the "ballett", and the ayre (air)

66

Chant

Series of chords to which words of psalms are sung in the Church or England

67

Air

English for Aria. Song or simple melody, sometimes the title of a movement of a suite

68

Italian Overture

Opening to Italian opera or oratorio. In three sections -fast, slow, fast

69

French Overture

An overture is an "opening piece" of instrumental music to be performed before an opera or oratorio or an independent work for performance in a concert hall. In the Baroque era, the French Overture was the opening to opera, oratorio or ballett. It begun with a slow section with dotted rhythms followed by a lively fugal section.

70

Concerto Grosso

This consisted of two contrasting groups of instruments; a small group of soloists (often two violins and cello) called the concertino, against an orchestra of strings called the ripieno (filling). A harpsichord or organ continuo filled out the texture when the ripieno group was playing, and continues to provide supporting harmonies on occasions when the concertino instruments played on their own

71

Solo Concerto

From the concerto grosso grew the solo concerto, in which a single instrument played against the weight of the orchestra. The idea of contrast became stronger still, and the composer often gave the soloist some difficult and exciting passages to play.

72

Anthem

This is the Protestant equivalent to the motet, which was sung in the Catholic Church. An Anthem is sung by a choir during services in Protestant Churches and is set in English, not Latin.

73

Symphonic/ Tone Poem

This is a one movement programme piece for orchestra which also uses a recurring theme (idee fixe/leitmotiv). Dance Nacabre by Saint-Saens is a Symphonic tone row

74

Da Capo Aria

An aria in ternary form (ABA) used in operas and oratorios in the 17th and 18th centuries. The 3rd section is not written out but the instruction "Da Capo" (from the beginning) is given instead. The repeat of the A section was performed with the solo ornamented.

75

Fugue

A polyphonic piece, based on a subject, which is then imitated by other voices in close succession. It is usually written in three or four parts called voices (whether the fugue is vocal or instrumental) and these are referred to as soprano, alto, tenor and bass. (See handout on fugue for the exposition, subject, counter subject, real/tonal answer, episode and stretto.