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Ian D. Bent

(Lat.: ‘triple’, ‘threefold’)

Terms used in medieval theory to denote principally (1) three-voiced polyphony. In 13th-century theoretical writing both terms were used as nouns in this sense, or as adjectives in phrases such as ‘organum triplum’ and ‘triplices conductus’ (see Organum and Conductus).

(2) The third voice of a polyphonic composition – an independent voice composed against a tenor and duplum (or motetus). The term ‘triplum’ was thus used in the 13th century with reference to organum and the motet; it remained in use in the 14th century, and can be found also (together with ‘triplex’) in the 15th century, although mostly replaced by terms such as ‘cantus’ and ‘superius’. The English form, ‘treble’, was used in the vernacular early 15th-century treatises on English discant.

(3) ‘Triplex’ is the name given to the highest of the three partbooks of a set in the 16th and 17th centuries (see Partbooks).

(4) Diminution or augmentation by a factor of three (‘tripla’, ‘proportio tripla’) in mensural notation of the 14th century to the 16th (...



Alejandro Enrique Planchart

(Gk. tropos: ‘turn’, ‘turn of phrase’; Lat. tropus)

Name given from the 9th century onwards to a number of closely related genres consisting essentially of additions to pre-existing chants. Three types of addition are found: (1) that of a musical phrase, a melisma without text (unlabelled or called trope in the sources); (2) that of a text to a pre-existing melisma (most frequently called prosula, prosa, verba or versus, though sometimes also trope, in the sources); (3) that of a new verse or verses, consisting of text and music (most frequently called trope, but also laudes, versus and in certain specific cases farsa, in the sources).

The medieval terminology was far from consistent (Odelman, C1975), and scholars in the late 19th and early 20th centuries expanded it (thus compounding the problem) to include even the sequence and its proses, the conductus, verse songs that sometimes replaced the Benedicamus Domino, and the upper voices of early Ars Antiqua motets. Despite efforts by Crocker (...


John Stevens, Ardis Butterfield and Theodore Karp

Lyric poets or poet-musicians of France in the 12th and 13th centuries. It is customary to describe as troubadours those poets who worked in the south of France and wrote in Provençal, the langue d’oc, whereas the trouvères worked in the north of France and wrote in French, the langue d’oil.

John Stevens, revised by Ardis Butterfield

The troubadours were the earliest and most significant exponents of the arts of music and poetry in medieval Western vernacular culture. Their influence spread throughout the Middle Ages and beyond into French (the trouvères, see §II below), German, Italian, Spanish, English and other European languages.

The first centre of troubadour song seems to have been Poitiers, but the main area extended from the Atlantic coast south of Bordeaux in the west, to the Alps bordering on Italy in the east. There were also ‘schools’ of troubadours in northern Italy itself and in Catalonia. Their influence, of course, spread much more widely. Pillet and Carstens (...


Michael Tilmouth

revised by B.A.R. Cooper

A piece for the trumpet, or, more often, one for other instruments or voices in which the melodic style of trumpet writing is adopted. Imitation of this kind was a common feature of Baroque music, a product of the creation at that period of genuinely idiomatic instrumental styles and, paradoxically, of a preoccupation with transferring them from their natural medium to others. The severe limitations of the notes available on the natural trumpet meant that imitations of its idiom were immediately recognizable as such: an early example is Du Fay's Gloria ‘ad modum tube’. Later they occur (generally in the keys of C or D, in which the trumpet was built) in the marches and soundings that are usual features of battaglias (e.g. ‘The Trumpetts’ in Byrd's Battle, MB, xxviii, no.94d) and in a wide range of other contexts: there is, for example, Biber's Aria tubicinium (DTÖ, xxv, Jg.xii/2, 59), where the scordatura of the violin is specially chosen to facilitate the imitation of a consort of trumpets, and there are examples for harpsichord, such as the ...


A collection of psalm tunes with an instructional preface, designed for use in the early American singing schools. See Psalmody, §II, and Shape-note hymnody.

Aikin, Jesse B.

Allen, Richard

Bayley, Daniel

Belcher, Supply

Belknap, Daniel

Carrell, James P.

Cole, John

Cooper, Wilson M.

Davisson, Ananias

Denson, Seaborn M.

Everett, Asa Brooks...



Kurt von Fischer


Richard Rastall

(Ger.: ‘tower music’)

A term denoting music to be played from a church tower, or a town hall tower, by a band of town musicians (see Stadtpfeifer). The practice was common in Germany from the late 16th century to the early 18th; the musical repertory consisted of harmonized chorales and other kinds of melody, or more extended pieces (...


Pauline Norton

(Fr. deux temps)

A fast ballroom dance of American origin. It became popular in the 1890s, particularly when danced to Sousa's The Washington Post (1889). It spread to Europe about 1900, and remained popular until replaced by the one-step and foxtrot shortly before World War I; indeed, the term ‘two-step’ was often used for the foxtrot in Europe during the 1910s. The steps, to a quick–quick–slow rhythm in each bar, were done with a gliding skip similar to that of the polka. The standard ballroom position with the man and woman facing each other was sometimes replaced by one in which the man stood behind and slightly to the left of his partner, who raised her hands above her shoulders to take his hands. The term also came to refer to the type of march to which the dance was originally performed, with a characteristic skipping rhythm in 6/8 and a light, springing melody. In addition to ...


(Fr.: ‘Tyrolese’, ‘Tyrolean’)

A fast triple-metre dance and song type, considered a modified form of Ländler. The name was first used in English to refer to fashionable ballet music of the early 19th century that attempted to represent the dances of Austrian and Bavarian peasants, whence it was adopted as an evocative title for pedagogical piano pieces; ‘tyrolienne’ was also applied to 19th-century vocal pieces intended to imitate Alpine folk music.

Tyrolese music was very popular in both England and the USA in the first half of the 19th century, partly because of the clamorous success of touring groups of Swiss and Austrian singers. The Rainer family were probably the first such group to achieve international fame. Their first visit to England, in 1827, prompted the publication of two volumes of songs from their repertory arranged by Ignaz Moscheles (The Tyrolese Melodies, London, 1827–9; a third volume contains a biography of the Rainers), and it apparently stimulated a constant popular demand in London for performances by similar groups (e.g. the brothers Dengg, the Steyrische Alpensänger, the Family Leo). The Rainers’ North American tours began with an appearance in Boston in ...




Matthew Head

[ungarescha] (It.)

A name used outside Hungary for a dance in the Hungarian style. In western Europe Hungarian dances appeared by the late 14th century in the ballet des nations (dances in a variety of national styles staged in court entertainments). The ungaresca is first mentioned by name in Milan in 1490, but at that time it probably had not acquired the lively, heavily accented character of 16th-century examples: a report of a Sforza wedding in 1494 notes that the allemande was danced ‘andante, like an ungaresco’ (cited in Pirro, Histoire de la musique). No choreography for the dance is known. The earliest printed ungaresche, dating from the late 16th century, are found in dance collections for viol consort (Mainerio's Primo libro de balli, 1578) and in lute and keyboard tablatures (Wolff Heckel's Lautten Buch of 1556 and Jakob Paix's Orgel Tabulaturbuch, 1583). Two Ungarische Paraden in Nörmiger's ...


Abram Loft

revised by Tim J. Anderson

American organizations designed to regulate, protect, and improve the working conditions of their members (professional performing musicians) and to act as agents in negotiating contractual terms through the power of collective bargaining. Trade unionization of musicians in the United States began in the 19th century. Beginning in the 20th century and continuing into the 21st, musicians’ unions have had to contend with important technological changes that pose significant structural threats to controlling the production and distribution of entertainment.

The Musical Fund Society of Philadelphia, a benevolent organization founded in 1820 and modeled after the Royal Society of Musicians of Great Britain, and the American musical fund society , founded in the same city in 1849 (providing sick benefits, aid, and pensions to members, their widows, and orphans, as well as funeral expenses to members), were typical of early associations formed by professional and amateur musicians in the United States. Such societies also sponsored musical performances, lectures, and discussions by their members but did not regulate working conditions or represent members in their negotiations with employers. The Philadelphia Musical Association and the Musical Mutual Protective Union of New York, both founded in ...



Nicholas Temperley, Howard Slenk, Jan R. Luth, Margaret Munck, John M. Barkley and R. Tosh



Roger Parker



John Stevens, Richard Rastall and David Klauser




William Gradante


An instrumental genre closely related to the waltz of the European tradition. It was cultivated by the Latin American colonial aristocracy as a pianoforte genre of the salon. In the folk tradition it is performed by groups including harp, guitar, tiple (small 12-string guitar), cuatro (small four-string guitar), violin and ...


Andrew Lamb

(Fr.: ‘waltz in two-time’)

A ballroom dance popular around the middle of the 19th century. The term is misleading, since, like the conventional waltz (à trois temps), the music was written in 3/4 time. The distinction lies in the number of steps danced to each bar of music. The steps were derived from the Galop with the spring while turning replaced by a glide, and thus consisted simply of a sideways sliding movement (pas glissé) which occupied the first two beats of a bar followed by a gliding turn (chassé) on the third beat. (The assumption that three turns occupied two bars of music is thus incorrect.) The music was livelier than that of the conventional waltz, being played more quickly (88 bars to the minute compared with 66) and with the time more strictly marked. Examples of the dance were composed by Jullien and Charles d'Albert.

The term ‘valse à deux temps’ has also been generally though erroneously applied to waltzes whose melody forms a cross-rhythm to the accompaniment....