Music: An Art and a Language

By Walter Raymond Spalding | Go to book overview

melodic outline and general treatment, and a third clause of reassertion, which shall repeat -- either literally or in varied form -the material of part one.1 In the Three-part form, as employed in the classic Minuet and Scherzo, each of the three parts taken by itself is in complete Two-part form; and as the third part was generally a literal repetition of part one, it was not written out, but at the end of the middle part (called the Trio, because it was originally written in three-voiced harmony) we find the direction "Minuet or Scherzo da capo," meaning a return to the first part. A coda or tail-piece is often added to round out the form. As the student will become thoroughly familiar with the Three-part form, in connection with the classic Symphonies soon to be studied (each Minuet, Scherzo or Trio being an example), our illustrations show the use of this form in independent pieces and are chiefly taken from modern literature; the object being so to interest the student in the beauty of these compositions as to convince him that in all good music content and design go hand in hand. For examples2 see Supplement Nos. 25, 26, 27.


CHAPTER VI
THE CLASSICAL AND THE MODERN SUITE

NO sooner had the Two- and Three-part forms become accepted as definite means of instrumental expression, than composers were eager to try their skill in combining dance-movements in such forms into larger groups. These compositions -- known in France as Ordres, in Germany as Suites and Partitas and in England as Lessons -- though all the movements were in the same key, yet showed considerable variety by reason of the contrast in the dance rhythms. They were, moreover, simple, direct and easily under

____________________
1
The three-part form is derived partly form the Italian " da Capo Aria" and partly form the fundamental instinct ofr restatement which we have seen in the Folk-song.
2
Additional illustrations, which will repay study are the following: the Allegretto of Beethoven's Sixth Sonata; the Schubert Impromptu, op. 90, No. 4; Brahms's Intermezzo, op. 117, No.1 and the Ballade in G minor, op. 118, No. 3, and for orchestra -- in extended treatment -- Debussy Prélude à l'après-midi d'un Faune.

-73-

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