« AnteriorContinuar »
2. THE RONDO-FORM.
The distinctive characteristics of this form are a principal phrase, which is extended or carried out in combination with other phrases, and then is heard again alone. The principal phrase may either have a single subject, or two parts; and in the latter case it is customary to repeat the first part (either altogether or partially) after the second part. The phrase may, indeed, also have three parts. Rondos are distinguishable into five forms.
The first is constructed in such a manner, that, after the principal phrase, a longer passage or a long succession of short phrases follows, which passes through many scales, but returns finally to the principal scale, where the principal phrase or an appendix (perhaps taken from it or from the passages) immediately closes. It sometimes happens that this form greatly resembles an extensive song-form in three parts-mostly, however, the principal phrase of a rondo is distinguished by too important and determined a close, to be mistaken for the first part of a song.
The second rondo-form has, besides the principal phrase, a second theme, a secondary phrase, likewise unseparated; or two or three parts which are in the scale either of the dominant or of the subdominant; or in the relative key; or in the principal scale in minor, if the principal phrase be in the major; or in the major, if the principal phrase be in the minor. But the difference from the song-form with a trio consists in this, that the second theme does not appear detached, by itself, but is mostly combined with the first. A passage or a chain of phrases leads* from the first to the second, and from this again a passage or a chain of phrases leads back to the first, where, with this, or with an appendix out of the first or second phrase, or out of the passages, the rondo comes to a close.
The third rondo-form has, besides the principal phrase, two secondary phrases-the one, in the mode of the principal phrase, and then generally in the sub-dominant; the other, usually in the relative scale. A passage or a chain of phrases leads commonly to the first secondary phrase; from this a return is effected to the principal phrase, which is then repeated. A passage is then made to the second secondary phrase, and from this again back to the principal phrase, with which, or with an appendix, a close is made.
The fourth rondo-form joins the principal and first secondary phrases together in a firmly conbined mass, as belonging to each other. After the first secondary phrase, it returns to the principal phrase (like the preceding forms), and thence proceeds to the second secondary phrase. After this, however, it does not merely repeat the principal phrase alone, but with it and at the same time, the first secondary phrase. This latter, which at first appeared in the scale of the dominant (or in minor phrases, in the relative key) comes forth now with the principal phrase in the principal scale. The first secondary phrase
* The leading from the principal to the first secondary phrase is mostly unnecessary, and the leading back again is rare.
More complete information upon this matter, and upon the forms of sonatas, with reference to numerous works of the composers, will be found in the third part of the Instructions for Composition.
enjoys less consideration in this form (since it appears merely as a closing addition to the principal phrase), but the second subsidiary phrase is constructed with all the more expression and emphatic completeness, inasmuch as it must sustain its importance against the combined two first phrases.
The fifth rondo-form rejects the middle return of the principal phrase, and closes the mass of the principal and first secondary phrases with a more extended form of conclusion and of greater decision, so that three well rounded and distinct masses are exhibited-viz., the principal phrase with the first secondary phrase; the closing phrase and the second secondary phrase; the principal phrase with the first secondary phrase and the closing phrase.
So much for the comprehension of the rondo-form. It will not be difficult of recognition with a little observation, although here and there deviations may occur, particularly with regard to change of scales, repetitions &c., upon which we cannot here further dilate.
3. THE SONATA-FORM.
It is well known that certain instrumental compositions for one or for two or three instruments are called sonatas. On these we shall make some observations in the next section. Not these compositions, but only one determined form shall be explained under the above name, other than which we know not what to adopt.
The sonata-form is distinguished from the higher and particularly from the fifth rondo-form, essentially by its rejection of the second subsidiary phrase, and consequently by its retention of only the first mass of the principal phrase, first subsidiary phrase, and closing phrase, together with the repetition thereof in the principal scale as its last mass. In this limitation, the composition as a
becomes distinguished from the proper sonata-form. Here, according to custom, the single parts of the composition are of slight construction; otherwise, sonatina-forms as well as sonata-forms employ figurated phrases and fugal successions, instead of the song-formed phrases, or the subjects (or the simple phrases) which serve in the rondo-form, as principal and subsidiary phrases. They receive, also, two or even more different phrases or subjects as so many themes which are held together merely by the scale in common (sometimes not even by that, but solely by a related scale), and can be considered collectively merely as the principal and subsidiary phrases; whence it would be more appropriate to call them a PRINCIPAL AND SUBSIDIARY PART.
The sonata-form agrees in this with the sonatinaform; it constructs its two masses essentially in the same manner; but it is distinguished by having a third mass between each, and so forms three parts. It moreover resembles the fifth rondo-form, in having the middle part only of different contents.
The first part begins immediately with the principal phrase, or with an appropriate introduction to, or pre-representation thereof; then follows, immediately, the subsidiary phrase in the scale of the dominant, if the principal be in major; or in the ↑ See Appendix C.
relative key, if the principal be in minor; or the principal, if in major, modulates by a transition passage into the scale of the dominant; or if in minor, into the relative scale; and in one scale or the other leads to the subsidiary phrase. With this latter, the first part immediately closes; or a passage follows with a special closing phrase; or perhaps, again, instead of the latter, or after it, a repetition will be seen out of the principal phrase. Thus the first part has shown both the phrases. The first in the principal key, the second in the nearest related key. The close is effected in the last; and here it depends entirely on the intention and determination of the composer, whether the whole first part shall be repeated or not.
The second part is joined immediately to the first, or leads on again. It begins with a leading passage or an indication of the principal phrase, or with a quite new and short secondary phrase. From this it leads to the subsidiary or to the principal phrase; then by a second passage to the phrase which has not yet appeared, or at once to the dominant of the principal key. The phrases themselves appear in this part in new and generally nearly related scales; the passages go through these and still more distantly related keys; and the whole second part becomes replete with the most brilliant modulation. Without repetition, and usually without any determined close, it passes over into the third part. This latter gives again the principal phrase in the principal key; leads, this time, the subsidiary phrase in like manner into the principal key, either immediately or by means of a passage; and, with this, with the passage and closing phrase belonging to it (sometimes also with a special appendix out of the principal phrase, perhaps), brings the conclusion of the whole in the principal key. The end of the first part is usually marked by the sign of repetition or closing cross bars. The two following parts are generally written without any such sign of separation. They are generally considered as a whole; and, in common parlance, are called briefly the second part. Sometimes, also, this second part (that is the second and third together) is repeated, and then an appendix as a final close is always added.
Many deviations, especially in the choice and arrangement of the scales, may be left to the discretion of individuals, or be referred to the study of composition for those who wish to penetrate further into this matter.*
These are the most important forms of art: all others that we may meet with in vocal and instrumental music, are either a selection from these or a combination of them.†
FIFTH SECTION. THE PECULIAR FORMS OF
Instrumental compositions are distinguished in the first place by the instruments for which they are destined. There are compositions for single instruments-for example, for the organ, pianoforte, violin, &c.; or for two or more instruments, as duetts, terzetts, quartetts, quintetts sestetts, sep*See Appendix D.
A particular mixture of the rondo and sonata-forms is exhibited in the Appendix D.
tetts, &c.; or, again, for masses of instruments, such as an orchestra, as we have already said cursorily at page 45.
All compositions for these single or combined instruments assume determined forms of art, of which we shall give a short elucidation, if not already described in this book
1. THE SONATA.‡
The Sonata is a composition for a solo instrument (or very properly with accompaniment of one or two others), which, according to custom, consists of three or four separate compositions, which are called MOVEMENTS.
The first movement, which is sometimes preceded by an introduction, has generally the sonata-form, and fixes the principal scale of the whole work. Generally its motion is quick (Allegro, &c.)
After the first, a slower and shorter movement (Adagio, Andante, or perhaps Allegretto, &c.) follows; mostly in a small rondo-form, or abbreviated sonataform, or cantabile with some variations. This movement is in another scale, perhaps of the dominant, subdominant, or relative key. The conclusion makes a third movement, sometimes, expressly called a finale, in which the sonata-form appears again, or great rondo-form mixed with fugue and variations. motion is here more lively (Allegro, Presto, &c.). It is in the principal key, which, if minor, is occasionally changed to major.
After or before the second movement, an intervening movement occurs in extensive compositions called a
MINUET OR SCHERZO,
mostly in the song-form, and in four or six parts (that is, with the trio and repetition of the principal movement), or also in the rondo and other forms. At times, also, there are more parts-for example, in the well known Septett of Beethoven, Op. 20 --Minuet and Scherzo, Andante and variations. Sometimes the sonata has only two movements, as in Beethoven's Op. 111; or only Adagio, Minuet, and Finale, and other smaller deviations.
This form is predominant in all duos, trios, quartetts &c., and in them the construction is generally richer and more polyphonic (or at least ought to be), because the powers of several instruments can be employed and must be kept in action. A smaller, more simply constructed sonata of less complicated ideas and development, consisting only of two or at the utmost of three movements, is called a
2. THE OVERTURE,* called by the Italians Sinfonia, is an orchestral composition in one movement, always prepared by an introduction, or interrupted by an intervening movement, mostly in sonatina, sonata, but sometimes also in fugue-form; rarely, however, in rondo-form, and still more rarely with variations. The overture is properly employed for the opening or beginning of any great artistic work-for example, a play, an opera, an oratorio, or a concert; hence its name.
3. THE SYMPHONY,
is an orchestral composition in the sonata-form, but, in accordance with the great powers of an orchestra, it is usually constructed upon large, massive, and well-defined proportions. It mostly consists of an introduction, allegro, andante, scherzo, and finale; all of which movements are more fully developed and more powerfully marked than is thought necessary in a sonata.
On this ground, the student may be advised to seek for sonata-forms first in symphonies (and overtures); and, in this pursuit, those unacquainted with scores will derive much assistance from the numerous "arrangements" for the pianoforte. Here they will find the fundamental forms more simple and distinguishable; while, in the sonata itself, phrases and themes are often crowded in a fine and as it were miniature construction, whereby the identification of the parts is rendered difficult to the unaccustomed eye. This is the case, also, in J. Haydn's symphonies. 4. THE CONCERTO.
Under this name, in more recent times, has been understood a composition in several parts, in which THE PRINCIPAL INSTRUMENT (or the principal part) or also several
undertake the chief parts, and thereby exhibit the superior powers or artistic skill of the performer. For this end, the orchestra performs a subordinate accompaniment, which occasionally, however, is raised to greater importance. Here, also, the sonata-form is the groundwork, but is limited to three movethe scherzo is generally omitted. How far ments; the concerto may deviate from the sonata-form, must be learned from the Instructions for Composition. A small concerto limited to two movements is called a concertino.
5. THE FANTASIA.
Such is the name of a combination of the most diversified forms, constituting a determined whole, for a solo instrument with accompaniment, or even with an orchestra. Number, selection, arrangement of the forms, modulations, &c., are most freely left to the apparently objectless flights of the imagination of the composer, in "a fine frenzy rolling." It begins perhaps with a cantabile introduction; passes into an adagio or allegro; thence into a rondo-form, fugue, variation, &c.; closes with an extensive phrase, or with a repetition of the first; chooses its scales from the impression of the moment, and scarcely
* Overtures to fill up the space between the acts or for the introduction of other acts, are called interludes. Beethoven's overture and interlude to Goethe's Egmont, are especially celebrated, and with justice. + Thus Beethoven has written a Fantasia for the pianoforte, accompanied by an orchestra, solo singing, and chorus.
considers itself bound to close in the principal tone Everything, in a word, is surrendered to the peculiar feelings and ideas of the composer, and, therefore, a distinctive identifying rule for this kind of composition is impossible.
6. CAPRICCJ, TOCCATE, AND STUDJ must be named last. They are compositions, sometimes in sonata or rondo-form, and sometimes, again, they assume the unbridled licence of the fantasia. They endeavour at times to illustrate and shadow forth a peculiar thought or passion; and, at others, their object is merely the attainment of rapid performance, or the command on the instrument of certain configurations of notation or modes of playing. SIXTH SECTION.-THE PECULIAR FORMS OF VOCAL MUSIC.
Vocal music in the first place is exhibited in two ways alone; as, PURE VOCAL MUSIC,
by one or few instruments, or by an orchestra. It is, moreover, divided into SOLO SINGING,
in which only one voice or single voices sing; and CHORAL SINGING,
in which several parts are performed by several combined voices.
Passing over what we have already learned, we will proceed to that which requires elucidation. 1. OF RECITATIVE.
Recitative is a song of a single voice, or sometimes of several voices, which does not take the invariable form of a melody, nor determined artistic form; neither does it conform to the strict value of notation, nor to fixed musical rhythm-on the contrary, it strives in its successions of sounds and in its rhythm to assimilate itself as much as possible to the declamatory accents of speech. Hence, recitative has no determined measure or bars, although it is commonly written in bars for the assistance of the eye.
In its progress, or at its close, recitative may assume a more determined form, such as a short song-shaped phrase, which is then called
and consists of sustained melody in fixed measure. If it be accompanied by simple chords, it is called recitativo secco or parlante; but if the accompaniment have its own melody, it is called obligato, or also accompagnato stromentato. If it should move for any time in regular measure, it is called Rec.? a tempo.
2. THE AIR, OR SONG (Aria).
The aria is an accompanied song of a solo voice, in which a determined state of the mind, a progression of the feelings, and the inward emotion of the singer are exhibited. Its form is either that of the small rondo or the sonata-form, but with abbreviation or omission of the second part.
Great arias are constructed by the combination of more forms. They begin, for example, with a songlike introduction, pass over into the rondo-form, and then, instead of repeating the chief phrase, they
proceed in a new phrase, perhaps in sonata-form. If, in fine, recitative and aria be combined, and thus form a larger whole, this latter is called a
SCENA OR SCENE.
Among these forms, we shall find the attendant ballad, duett, terzetto, &c., and the cantata for one voice. This last is nothing but an extensive scena, or a succession of contending or varying emotions. On the other hand, the
ARIETTA OR CAVATINA
is a song or aria consisting of one phrase only; it is concerned with gentler, more calm, and less important sensations, and is also less developed.
3. THE CHORUS
takes the most diversified configurations: song-form, sonata or rondo-form (both closely held together), fugue-form, or a combination of several forms. It is mixed with solo phrases for one voice or for several single voices it proceeds with them, at the same time, into phrases of many parts (chorus with song, solo), or forms the counter-phrase and background for a solo song (aria and chorus, &c.), all of which according to its form, requires no further elucidation. Only one form remains now to be explained :— THE MOTETT,
of which there are two kinds. In the first form it is an ecclesiastical cantata, consisting of several separate movements, &c., of different forms, such as solo, trio, corale, fugue, &c. In the second it is a choral composition (mostly of devotional contents), in which, after a cantabile or figurated introduction (or without it), a fugal theme is carried through once; then a second, and then a third time; and finally with this, or with the introductory movement, or with a separate closing phrase, it ends. This form is distinguished from the fugue of two or more subjects, not so much by the freely-written phrases added to the beginning and end (for these might occur in the fugue and be omitted in the motett), as by the circumstance, that the different subjects are carried through by themselves, without ever passing through simultaneously or in conjunction with each other.
The fugal corale, mentioned at page 90, is a particular species of motett.
By a combination of recitatives, airs, choruses, &c., is formed the
For the sake of completeness, we must not omit to mention, in concluding, the
which are merely exercises for the voice, and are therefore composed without any text.
SEVENTH SECTION.-MUSIC IN COMBINATION WITH OTHER OBJECTS.
He who has formed a just appreciation of our statements relative to forms of art, will be able to perceive, without difficulty, in what manner music is connected with other objects, and what peculiar configurations it assumes in such combination.
We are here to mention briefly only the most important of these associations.
In the first place, it is united with the divine service. Herein, as is well known, it is employed as song in the corale (song-form), in the administration of the liturgy (mostly a kind of recitative); and instrumentally in the introduction of the service, &c. The more considerable forms are— THE HYMN,
consisting usually of one choral phrase only, though sometimes mixed with solo phrases. Then we have THE SPIRITUAL CANTATA,
called peculiarly ecclesiastical music, and consisting of several solo and choral movements. In the Catholic service there is
and—although in our times no longer forming a part of the divine service, still mostly dedicated to the expression of religious feelings and sentimentsTHE ORATORIO,
a spiritual drama for musical performance only, not for representation by person and action, as a theatrical drama. In all these creations, all kinds and species of solo and choral phrases are combined according to the requirements of the text, and to the intention and imagination of the composer.
In the second place, music is combined in a much greater variety of ways in the drama. Here we find 1. THE BALLET,
in which pantomime and dancing are united. The music, chiefly instrumental, must be suitable to all kinds of action, and employs, for that object, sometimes real dance forms, and at others various arbitrary successions of forms, both for the imaginative matter and for the finale. Whole ranges of such forms occupy great scenes or entire acts together, held in connexion merely by modulation, ingenious repetition of previous phrases, and the internal sense of the action and music.
2. THE MELODRAMA. shows us instrumental music as an accompaniment to, or as phrases intervening with, discourse, whereby the latter becomes deeper in its meaning, and more powerful in its impressiveness: the action is illustrated and rendered intelligible in its preconcerted situations, and the melodramatic intentions, in general, are accomplished. Here, the music has
*They are so named from the syllables which were formerly given to the tones (page 7, in note), and with which, up to the present moment, exercises for singing have been written. The pronunciation and the voice are thus both cultivated at once.
and the French Vaudeville, are, to a certain extent, imitations of this occasional form, but more laboured and with a more strongly marked intention. These are constructed with slight dramatic involution; with songs, replies, and so forth, out of popular life; or composed on, or abundantly interwoven with, popular airs. In this production, also, the songs, for the most part at least, should be introduced exactly as they may be imagined to be sung and heard in daily life.
From this point music is elevated into real artistic value in the drama.
4. THE OPERA
is a drama in which, in lieu of ordinary speech, an elevated utterance, the language of music and song, is introduced, with the same artistic rights and truth as in the higher drama poetry supersedes the prose of common life.
An opera is either composed throughout or consists of spoken dialogue, interspersed with vocal compositions for one or several voices, In either case, we distinguish
THE GREAT Opera, which is tragic, and almost constantly composed throughout from
THE ROMANTIC OPERA, which, like the romantic plays in Germany and England, is serious or gay, elevated or common, in alternating moments or situations, and is generally interwoven with dialogue.
is distinguished by the lightness and gaiety of its subject and treatment. We have, further,
THE COMIC OPERA
(opera buffa), and many intermediate or mixed species. Into all of the foregoing, all forms of singing music-recitative and aria, part-music and chorus-and various kinds of instrumental music, are freely admitted, at the entire discretion of the poet and the composer.
A derivative from the opera, is the
PLAY WITH CHORUS,
of the actors in ordinary discourse,-a combination which appears out of character inasmuch as the chief personages remain in the lower sphere of common speech, while secondary performers (the chorus) are raised to the higher attribute of song.
The more intimate explanation of all these forms must be reserved for another place (the Instructions for Composition, the Philosophy of Art, and the Science of Music). Here we can merely point out in a general sketch, the contents and objects of each of these constructions.
And so, in conclusion, we shall briefly state, that the doctrine of art generally separates all forms of music into the following classes :
It divides (I.) The forms of vocal music into1. ECCLESIASTICAL MUSIC.
2. DRAMATIC MUSIC.
3. CHAMBER MUSIC.
4. POPULAR MUSIC, or NATURAL Song. Under ecclesiastical music, the
is usually comprised, although it is no longer any part of the divine service, and is generally performed in concert rooms, not in churches. The corale, also, must be considered as ecclesiastical music, although it is become really popular song.
Chamber music embraces all music not included in the other classes; more particularly that which is more suitable for performance in a small circle, or in domestic and social assemblies.
(II.) Instrumental music is divided into—
To the first, belong symphonies, overtures, and concertos; to the second, solos, duos, quartett compositions, and similar productions, for domestic and
In conclusion, according to the different objects to which the art is applied,
THREE DIFFERENT STYLES are distinguished-as church, opera, and chamber styles; and also
FREE AND STRICT STYLES, which latter is peculiarly dedicated to church music, in which it is expected that all the rules of art be followed in the most rigid manner, and all the forms be carried out with unwearying diligence to the fullest completeness. It is desirable, moreover, in this style, that polyphonic forms, and more especially fugal, should be employed rather than homophonic forms.
In an earnest and deep investigation into the nature and objects of art, the foregoing appears partly one-sided and false, partly an idle and profitless fiction of the imagination.
As to the distinction between free and strict styles, it is manifest that a rule of art must have a rational ground or not; and that, in the affirmative case, the rule ought to be observed throughout; or, in the negative, not at all. If, for example, it be true, that following fifths and octaves (page 71) have
in which choruses are sung between the dialogue sometimes,―or, according to the over-hasty belief of