Canon

In similarity to its cousin the fugue, the Canon is a form of musical counterpoint. Where the fugue has voices which follow the melody returning to it, the canon has overlapping voices of repetition or imitation. The simplest type of canon is a...

Cantata

A Cantata is a form of vocal music, usually with instrumental accompaniment, similar in sound to a diminished oratorio. Cantatas can be secular or sacred. Sacred cantatas played a central role in the Lutheran church.

Chorale

The chorale is a German-Protestant hymn. In efforts to coerce the congregation into more participation, musician, composer, and religious reformer Martin Luther wrote the first known chorales in the early 16th century.

Divertimento

Divertimento originates from the Italian word for "diversion." It was a light versatile composition primary used for entertaining special guests or visiting dignitaries. The divertimento might be written in three, five, or up to...

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...

Toccata

The word Toccata comes from the Italian 'toccare' meaning "to touch." The toccata is written for keyboard to offer keyboardists the opportunity to 'show off' their musical abilities.Originally, the form was written for organists. As the form increased in 16th...