Oratorio

The origin of the oratorio is Italian, based on the Latin oratorium oratory. Another of the large scale musical forms, the oratorio stems from the music composed during the 16th century for the Church of the Oratory of St. Philip Neri...

Overture

The Overture is an introduction into a more dramatic musical performance such as an opera or ballet. Some overtures are used in concert as a complete stand alone composition. Early overtures began with a fast moving style..

Prelude

As its name implies, a Prelude is a short piece of music preceding a more substantial work. It is an introduction into the main composition. Musicians always tune their instruments before playing and they would improvise short..

Rhapsody

In musical circles, a Rhapsody is a single movement instrumental, irregular in form and of a free flowing nature, thereby suggestive of improvisation. The musical term rhapsody was used in ancient Greece as a description of..

Recitative

The musically spoken dialogue or Recitative is a type of vocal music representing conversation. Like opera, the actors sing their parts yet differ from opera in that the actors in recitatives speak in a musical manner of tones; each..

Requiem

The Requiem is used to create a solemn setting for the Roman Catholic Mass for the dead. The mood of this music is meant to represent the solemnity or dignity of the occasion. Many composers have used this type of setting..

Singspiel

The Singspiel, German for "play with singing," originated in the mid 16th century with upcoming Austrian and German composers. During this period numerous comic singspiel compositions were produced. The singspiel form as we...

Song Cycle

The Song Cycle was developed in Germany during the early 19th century. Song Cycles are groups of songs with musical accompaniment. The lyrics are often taken from poems or the works of a single poet and based on a theme..

Suite

During the early 15th century the Suite was born, though similar writings had occurred earlier in the former century. The suite began as an instrumental form comprised of a series of movements of the same key. Early suites took on..

Symphony

The symphony is a large musical composition for orchestra which is usually written in four linked movements. The word Symphony is of Greek origin and is defined as "sounding together." The term was applied to various forms of ensemble music..