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cptexas
08-30-2005, 10:58 PM
OK. So there's sonata form and fugue form. What others are there?

I know, I know. I'm being too technical and everyone's gonna tell me to just write what I feel and all that. I happen to be going through a stage when I REALLY like the classical style, so I'm trying to learn about all the forms.

I started playing with sonata form and found it to be very useful for expanding two themes into a complete and entertaining work. As far as I know, that's the only way I know how to expand on a theme. How do you take a theme and create a whole piece from it? I've been playing SO much with that stupid orch duel 1 theme I've pretty much teared it to pieces and still can't get a decent work out of it. I've tried fugueing it, sonataing it, concertoizing it...EVERYTHING I TELL YOU!!! :eek: It's hard.

I also notice that the sonata form doesn't really have a climax anywhere in it. The recap is usually more bold than the exposition, but I don't know if you could really call it a climax. Is there a seperate 'climatic' form of music?

So what other classical musical forms are out there?

-Chris

dvincent
08-30-2005, 11:56 PM
Some other musical forms include:

binary (AABB)
ternary (ABA) (AABA) (AABABA)
march form (with added trio)
compound ternary (scherzos, minuets, da capo arias) or minuet and trio
rondo (ABACADAEA...) ((ABACAB'A)
arch (ABCDCBA)
passacaglia and chaconnes (ostinato or repeated harmonic progression)
theme and variations
free variation

falcon1
08-31-2005, 04:52 AM
Cptexas,

not all themes are born equal so some themes aren't good canditates for good fugue work. Well except in hands of experts like Bach. :) But good themes for fugue stay as much around tonic/dominant as possible, it can of course be chromatic but it still has some tonic/dominant feeling to it.

All all classical sonatas has climaxes, of course variant in strength. The climax isn't always how loud the music goes, but also harmonic progression speed, texture, activites etc. this generally happens in the Development section - often when the Recap is closing in, or when the Recap is breaking through the Development and take over.
It's also worth mention that climax of piece can be the rest/pause/silence!

cptexas
08-31-2005, 08:45 AM
Thanks!
Falcon, I see what you're saying about climaxes. I guess it would be when the recap takes over with the development.

Yeesh I'm confused!! I'll just stick with sonata form for now. It's very easy for me to understand and I REALLY like it's sound. I mean, I REALLY like it!!! :D

Yeah, I know...I'm weird. :rolleyes:
:p

-Chris

southportJim
08-31-2005, 02:20 PM
I've been playing SO much with that stupid orch duel 1 theme I've pretty much teared it to pieces and still can't get a decent work out of it. I've tried fugueing it, sonataing it, concertoizing it...EVERYTHING I TELL YOU!!! :eek: It's hard.


I know what you mean! Form is my main stumbling block with continuing an idea past the initial "inspiration" stage. On the current duel I played around with all sorts of things for 3 weeks and then finally started completely over a couple of days before it was due.

I was not at all happy with the end result, but I had promised myself I would submit "something, no matter how bad" this time around (since I missed the 2nd round). Oh well...we'll try again next time.
;-)

Fabio
08-31-2005, 02:21 PM
... Is there a seperate 'climatic' form of music?

So what other classical musical forms are out there?

-Chris

Yes it exist: frequently eastern europe dances as some Ebrew and mediterranean are well described by your "climatic" form!

The crescendo and accelerando loop of russian songs, as of ungarian dances, as of Ebrew dance and Greek Sirtaki, have all this common expressive root.

But even more evolved (or less ethnic) forms, because based on popular origins are "climatic". A "noble" sample: Viennese Waltz.
An ethnic but sophisticated sample: Ravel's Bolero.

This is the negation of the form, you simply repeat continuously the theme, as in the loop, as in "Kallijnka", but the crescendo and accellerando give sense to the music.

Of course you may do the opposite, with diminuendo and rallentando, in an "anti-climatic" way....

( wow so much neo-logism we coined today! Is it English, I don't think so...)
:D

newmewzikboy
08-31-2005, 02:23 PM
form follows function

dpc
08-31-2005, 02:27 PM
The Chorale Prelude is a beautiful form which can be used very easily in a modern idiom. Bach's numerous masterpieces in this form show it's uniqueness and value. Basically it's a tune (chorale) that plays over contrapuntal textures underneath it. The tune is halted after a phrase which allows for free counterpoint then returns for the next phrase which ends, then more free cpt., etc., continuing in this manner.

Fabio
08-31-2005, 02:40 PM
form follows function

YES! No shorter frase may be so true and meaningful.

You may consider the form the "extension" of functions. The classic final cadenza (II-I64-V7-I) is a "form summary". Better book about form start analyzing the simple beat as the original cell of the form. Binary and Ternary are the source of simmetry and rythm in music and as in a play of "chinese boxes" the "inciso" is made in this way. Using a binary or ternary combination of fragment and elements you build phrases and themes, developement episodes, and pieces suite.

The only exception to this rule is the "continuous" composing, like free counterpoint compositions, but a text or a chorale are hidden as an external form maker.

cptexas
08-31-2005, 02:49 PM
Thanks Fabio, NMB!
Form follows function. I never thought of it that way. Thanks!

-Chris

Fabio
08-31-2005, 02:53 PM
The Chorale Prelude is a beautiful form which can be used very easily in a modern idiom. Bach's numerous masterpieces in this form show it's uniqueness and value. Basically it's a tune (chorale) that plays over contrapuntal textures underneath it. The tune is halted after a phrase which allows for free counterpoint then returns for the next phrase which ends, then more free cpt., etc., continuing in this manner.

Yes I agree. And the most interesting development for the Chorale form is when every free counterpoint episode is composed using fragment and variations of the main theme. It was mainly an organ work. Incredible orchestral samples are in Bach's Cantatas, someone very famous, like BWV147 Chorale (known as: Jesus joy of man's desiring).

The most incredible are anyway the BWV140 Wachet auf overture, and the Riform Celebratio BWV80 Ein feste burg. In both cantatas one aria also is written in Chorale prelude form!