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Music Terms

Compositional Features

TermDefinition
Sequence Melody repeated by same instrument at higher/lower pitch
Repetition Melody/rhythm repeated by same instruments
Imitation Melody "copied" by other instruments
Ostinato Persistently repeated melody/motif/rhythmic pattern
Antiphony Question and answer/musical dialogue/call
Syncopation Off-beat rhythm. Emphasis on weaker beats
Arpeggio Notes of chord played in succession instead of together
Pedal A note often the tonic held or repeated over several bars
Stretto Overlapping of the different entries of themes
Ornamentation Use of decorative effects to achieve variety
Unison 2 or more instruments/voices playing/singing at the same pitch or at and octave distance
Created by: Emma O'R