I’m Thinking About…
Going to take a break from your regularly scheduled content today because I have a question to ask. But if you want to know what I’ve been thinking about music wise, it’s this. Why we don’t focus more on form in music theory classes is beyond me.
Anyway, I’m thinking of putting out a one month course that puts a lot of the suggestions I make on the CG Blog into practice. That is, each day, you’d get an assignment. The assignment might be about organizing your practice schedule or technique or musicianship or interpretation. Some of this stuff would be expansions on things that have been covered before, and a lot of it would be new.
I believe the reason why form is not a more integral part of theory class is because it really isn’t theory per ce, rather an after-the-fact topic. In other words, form is a result of the work done with theory. As an undergrad form and analysis was an entirely separate class and textbook. Probably because there is so much to cover – much like counterpoint.
I disagree to some extent. Form is theory (making a broad statement about the structure of music), and people were doing repetition of material long before traditional tonal harmony came about.
The question, I suppose, it how to deal with form early in a more logical way. Everyone can hear the return of the thematic material in a Sonata, but they might not understand the structural dissonance the departure from tonic causes. That’s okay. I think we can understand how form works in a broad sense (statement departure return, in most cases), that’s very powerful.