Classical Musical Form Basics

(Note: Text is larger for Projection in Class)

(Above Images from BaylisCourtMusic)

What is musical form?

Definition (From Britannica Online)

"The Structure of a Musical Composition"

Binary Form: AB
Strophic: AAA
Sonata: Exposition, Development, Recapitulation
Sonata Rondo: ABA-C-ABA
Through-Composed: Composed from beginning to end with little repetition

Different musical forms:

Why use Musical Form?

Musical form is important because it helps give a composition structure and continuity. Often, works that lack form seem aimless, without a strong beginning or end. The influence of nonwestern cultures, especially in the 20th century, gave birth to many forms of music which no longer depended on strict musical forms like binary and ternary. All the same, the study of musical forms is integral to any classical composer's training.

Ternary form example:

Detailed information:
Images from:
by Catherine Schmidt-Jones

Musical Form

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