Double Escapement
Hammer rebounds faster, goes to an intermediate position until released, and allows for faster repeated notes.
Character Pieces

Romantic and and lyrical single-movement piano pieces.  Have titles such as nocture, etude, and mazurka.


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Vaguely programmatic in describing something without words.


Individual freedom of expression.

John Field
One of the first to write small character pieces for piano.

“Night piece.”


Evokes mood of calm night with lyrical melody accompanied by broken chords.

George Sand

One of Chopin’s girlfriends. ;

French Novelist.

Eusebius, Floristan, Master Raro

Schumann’s Personal Character


Florestan:  Fiery, Capricious, Tempestous, Impulsive

Eusebius:  Calm, contemplative, and introspective dreamer. 

Thematic Transformation
Themes exhibiting entirely new “characters”, but retaining their “identity.”
Symphonic Poem
A (usually single-movement) “programmatic” orchestral piece.
“Elfin” Style

Light, airy style of staccato with repeated notes and repeated pattens.


Often soft.

Idee Fixe

“A fixation.”


The idee fixe is a theme which represents Harriet Smithson and that is “transformed” to show different feelings toward her or changes in her character.

Hybrid Genres
Because of Berlioz’s interest in literature, drama, and programmatic instrumental music, some of his pieces don’t fall in to traditional genres.  They are viewed as “hybrid” pieces.
“Set Forms/Set Pieces”
Pieces that have a definite beginning and ending.  This allows for applause.
“On-going form/On-going pieces”
There is an on-going flow with fewest definitive endings; solos, duets, choruses, etc. may flow from one in to the other.
Bel Canto

“Beautiful Singing”


A central important element in the Italian musical style.  Exhibiting virtuosity but reduced to improve interpretation.


Not complicated for the sake of being complicated.

Rossini Crescendo
A repeated pattern that crescendos over a significant time.
Grand Opera

A serious work on a histoical subject.


Usually involves making a “major decision.”  (e.g., Faith vs. Love)


Usually more realistic, but with grandiose plots and scenery.

Singing between aria and recitative.
Musical elements associated with particular people, feelings, objects, etc.