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Duration

Duration refers to the lengths of sounds and silences in music.

TermDefinition
Duration This refers to the lengths of sounds and silences in music and includes the aspects of beat, rhythm, metre, tempo, pulse rates and absence of pulse.
Beat This is the continuous underlying pulse of music. It can be strong or weak, regular and irregular or indefinite (there is no pulse)
Rhythm Patterns of long and short sounds and silences found in music. It can be repetitive (the same patterns are used over and over).
Tempo The speed of the beat. Music may be relatively fast or slow and may become faster or slower
Metre This is another word for time signature. It just means the number of beats in each bar
Semibreve Worth four beats in common time or in a 4/4 time signature.
Minim Worth two beats in common time or in a 4/4 time signature.
Crotchet Worth one beat in common time or in a 4/4 time signature.
Quaver Worth half a beat in common time or in a 4/4 time signature.
Semiquaver Worth a quarter of a beat in common time or in a 4/4 time signature.
Bar This is simply a way of dividing the music into small measurable parts. this helps the composer stay organised when composing, while also making it easier for the musician to read. You can find these by looking for vertical lines down the whole staff in the music.
Dotted Rhythm This is any rhythm pattern that continually uses a dotted note with a shorter note after
Time Signature A Symbol that has two numbers placed one on top of the other. The top number tells us the metre or how many beats there are in each bar. The bottom number tells us what type of note receives one beat.
Offbeat The off beat notes are notes that fall between the main beats.
Ostinato Is a continuous repeating melodic or rhythmic pattern
Riff is a short melodic pattern that may be used in different parts of a piece, it may only be heard a few times
Rubato Literally translates to 'Robbed time'. It is an expressive push and pulling of tempo. A popular example can be heard at the beginning of Tupac's famous song Changes.
Largo Very slow. 40-60 beats per minute
Lento Slowly. 60-66 beats per minute
Adagio Fairly slowly. 66-76 beats per minute
Andante At a moderate walking pace. 78-108 beats per minute
Moderato At a moderate pace. 108-120 beats per minute
Allegro Fast (note the big number range within this tempo). 120-160 beats per minute
Vivace Fast and lively (If the song is particularly lively call it this rather than allegro). 132-168 beats per minute
Presto Very vast. 168-200 beats per minute
Prestissimo Extremely fast. 200-210 beats per minute
Ritardando Gradually getting slower (abbreviation rit.)
Accelerando Gradually getting faster (aabbreviation accel.)
Triplets Squeezing 3 notes into the time of two of the same type notes. e.g. fitting three quavers into the space usually allowed for two.
Created by: david.ivinson
 

 



Voices

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