I speak for the whole of the music community when I say that fugues are daunting things. They feature multiple melodic lines, take a lot of time to perfect, and, let’s be honest, they’re really confusing.
Fortunately, I have some good news. There is Continue reading
There are a couple of things I’ve learned since I started playing the violin. One of those things is the importance of warming up. By “warming up,” I mean setting aside 5-10 minutes at the beginning of my practice session to fire up my brain and limber up my muscles. Today, I’m going to tell you why warming up is so important and how I warm up. (You can keep in mind that I’m writing this from a violinist’s perspective, but most of my points apply to other instruments too).
Alfredo Casella was a relatively recent Italian composer born in 1883. He had classical music in his blood from the start – his father, two brothers, and grandfather (who knew Paganini!) played cello. Furthermore, Casella’s mother was a pianist who gave him his first music lessons. Continue reading
It may come as a surprise to you to learn that the British don’t call quarter notes quarter notes – they call them crotchets. In fact, the Brits have their own system of music terminology when it comes to note values. Their whole note is a “semibreve”, their half note is a “minim” , and their eighth is a “quaver”. Continue reading
Have you ever considered what the term allemande actually means? Or ballade? Nocturne? Gavotte? These are, in essence, templates for a piece – musical forms. The waltz is the most well-known form; everyone knows waltzes always have three beats to the measure. All these other pieces—allemandes, nocturnes, gavottes—are forms too, but Continue reading
“Oh, I recognize that piece!” There are some classical pieces that have not only made their way into the musician’s repertoire but have also become popular in modern society. Maybe you’ve heard some of these pieces in movies, advertisements, or TV shows. I think you’ll have heard most of them – if not all!
This week, I was going to post on musical forms such as the symphony, gavotte, etc, but I soon realized that that post would have quite a bit of meter in there. Meter is kind of a tricky concept to grasp—I didn’t fully understand it for a long time, myself—so I thought it would be appropriate to write about rhythm and meter as a sort of preparatory post to the one on musical forms.