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Questions and Answers

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K. H.—A diminished seventh chord can be formed on any degree of a scale by adding to it a minor third, an imperfect fifth and a diminished seventh; for example: B, D, F, A-flat. You will also note that each member of the diminished chord is the distance of a minor third from the next.
 
J. C. H.—1. Kuyawiak is pronounced as if spelled, Koo-yah-ve-ak.
 
2. Dolce Far Niente is pronounced as if spelled, Dohl-che far ni- en-te, short vowels, and means "sweet doing nothing" or "sweet idleness."
 
C. C.—1. Guido of Arezzo, 990-1050 A. D., is considered the inventor of the use of the syllables ut, re, mi, fa, etc., for solmization. The ut was afterward changed to do.
 
Scarlatti, Philip Emmanuel Bach, Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven are the composers who developed the sonata form. Modern composers do not write very much in sonata form. Mendelssohn, Schumann, Grieg, and Brahms wrote pianoforte sonatas, but they are not much used at the present time, although sonatas for violin or 'cello with pianoforte are still used a great deal. Macdowell, Schytte, and Sinding, among living composers, have written pianoforte sonatas.
 
Guillaume Dufay (1380-1430), Johannes Ochenheim (1430- 1513), called "The Sebastian Bach of the Fifteenth Century," Josquin des Prés (1440-1521), of whom Luther said, "He was master of notes while others were mastered by notes"; Orlando di Lasso (1520-1595), and Palestrina (1514-1594), are the most prominent composers identified with early church music. As regards the English church, the most prominent names are Christopher Tye (1500-1560), John Merbecke (1523-1583), Thomas Tallis (1529-1585), and William Byrde (1543-1623).
 
E. A.—A diatonic half-step or semitone is one which occurs as a part of a diatonic scale; for example, E-F, or B-C, in the key of C. A diatonic semitone always involves two different letters. A chromatic semitone is one caused by chromatic alteration, as G-G sharp. a chromatic semitone occurs only between two notes on the same degree.
 
M. H.—"Träumerei" by Schumann is Op. 15, No. 7, and the "Little Romance," generally published with it in sheet music, is Op. 68, No. 19. It was Theodore Thomas who put the two pieces together as one number.
 
F. B. W.—The term mode is used in Greek and old ecclesiastic music—for example, the Dorian mode, the Lydian mode, etc. The term key is not properly used in conjunction with Dorian or Lydian. A mode was founded on each note of the scale as we know it, and consisted of the notes in regular succession up to the octave. It is easy to see that the order of succession of tones and semitones differed in each. Modern music has taken the series beginning on C and on A as the two modes to be used, imitates them on any degree of the scale, and thus forms a key which is named from the first or keynote.
 
S. L,—1. There are two composers by the name of Macfarren: Sir George A. Macfarren, who was born in London, March 2, 1813, and died there October 31, 1887. He was principal of the Royal Academy of Music, London, for a number of years, and was knighted in 1883. His compositions include operas, oratorios, cantatas, sacred music, and works for chamber concerts and orchestra, and several sonatas for piano. He was famous as a teacher of harmony, and his "Six Lectures on Harmony " is a standard work. He was one of the first English composers to accept the system of harmony advocated by Dr. Alfred Day.
 
Walter Cecil Macfarren, a brother of Sir George, was born August 28, 1826, and is still living. His compositions include several overtures for orchestra, chamber music, songs, part-songs, and pianoforte works.
 
2. Berthold Tours was born December 17, 1838, at Rotterdam, and died in London, March 11, 1897. He was musical adviser for the publishing house of Novello, Ewer & Co. for a number of years. He wrote a great deal of sacred music, songs, and pianoforte music. He was a violinist of some note in his earlier days.
 
A. B. C.—You will find a full account of the operation of severing the ligament which binds the fourth finger to the fifth in The Etude for April, 1898.
 
A. B. E.—The seventh of the dominant is sometimes doubled, especially in writing in more than four parts, the exigencies of the part movement requiring it. In such case one seventh descends and the other ascends. Occasionally it may happen in four-part harmony that the seventh is momentarily doubled, as in the well-known hymn-tune, by Mendelssohn, to the words "Hark, the Herald Angels Sing," in which the melody has the notes Band C, two eighths progressing up to D, the bass being the seventh C, a quarter-note, which falls to B; or it might happen, say in the key of C, that the last notes in a measure might be F and D, two eighths progressing to C. These two notes could be harmonized on F, a quarter-note, although D and F would be better. The chord formed by the first inversion of the leading note, triad, is generally considered as a part of the dominant seventh, exceptions being determined by the progression ; in such case the seventh may be doubled, one ascending, the other descending. In what are known as secondary sevenths, the seventh may be doubled under conditions similar to those that maintain in dominant sevenths.
 
T. M. G.—The Italian terms, allegro, allegretto, etc., are rather misleading with regard to the rate of speed at which a given music piece should move. In Beethoven's seventh and eighth symphonies the slow movements are marked allegretto, and at one time these were taken much too quickly. The word allegretto means cheerful in style; but the master supposed that our rhythmic sense would tell us that the quarter-note beats should be very deliberate,—in fact, slow. At present musicians can judge very nearly from the Italian terms (and the music itself) what particular movement is required. But the quarter- or half-note beats do not always represent the movement, and this it is which causes doubt and confusion. For instance, the saraband is a slow dance; the notes of the melody usually correspond to the beats, which are rather slow and deliberate. But we may perform a lively dance, like the bolero, according to the same metronomic beats (say = 80), and it will be instantly recognized as a quick, lively movement because the principal notes are of short duration, and there is a suggestion of animation and commotion as soon as the castanet rhythm begins. The melody notes are quicker still, and thus the rhythm sounds like an allegro, though in reality the mensural beats are no faster than they are in the saraband, which is marked andante, largo, or larghetto.
 
Many years ago I attempted to classify twelve degrees of movement, by means of Italian terms, from prestissimo to grave. But all such classifications are arbitrary and I do not now place much reliance upon them. Where the general movement is indicated   metronomically by the composer there should be no doubt as to the tempo. In the absence of such indication we must rely upon the nature of the music. The adagio in Beethoven's Op. 13 is, according to my judgment, usually taken too slowly. Performers are evidently misled by the sixteenths of the accompaniment and they play these adagio, whereas it is the melody which should be played adagio. Owing to the non-sustaining tone-quality of a piano the music seems to hesitate and drag when the quarter-note beats are very slow, and this seems to me quite unsatisfactory. It also gives too much importance to the accompaniment, which is mostly rhythmic.
 
One other consideration must be borne in mind. Rapid notes of embellishment, those which are parenthetic or adventitious, must be distinguished from principal melody notes which move rapidly and receive more accent than do the former. Compare the groups of thirty-second notes in the adagio to Beethoven's Op. 2,1, with the eighth notes in any standard tarantella.    A. J. Goodrich.
 
Sister M. P.—1. The pianoforte was invented by Bartolomeo Cristofori, musical instrument maker to the Duke of Tuscany, Cosmo di Medici. The first reliable account of it was published by Scipione Maffei, in the "Giornale de' Litterati d'ltalia," Venice, 1711. Cristofori had made three of these instruments when Maffei wrote the account and published a drawing of the mechanism. It follows that Italian harpsichord players must have been the first to attempt the new instrument.
 
The first record of a semi-public performance on the piano is that of Sebastian Bach's visit to Frederick the Great at Potsdam in 1747, when he played two pianos by Silbermann, which the later investigations of Herr Bechstein have proved to be constructed on Cristofori's model. (See the Bach number of The Etude for July, 1899)
 
Five quarter-note time is composed of simple measures, and has been derived from five-step dances. It should be delivered with one accent (on the first note). Slavonic folk-music is especially rich in this kind of measure; but all the early dance songs of all nations possess a fair proportion in measures of five beats.
 
S.—Song form as applied to a composition can be more broadly expressed by the term lyric as opposed to thematic. It can be better explained by illustration than by definition. It generally has three periods, the first, sixteen measures; a second, which may be in any one of several related keys, frequently based on the same motives, of sixteen measures; and a return of the first period, which is usually extended by the addition of a coda. This general form is much extended by the elaboration of the different parts, but in every case the general plan of a principal period, a second, and a return to the first can be traced.
 
One of the most complete books on the subject of form is the one by Professor E. Prout, and his work on "Applied Forms" is very exhaustive. W. S. B. Mathews has a very good work entitled "Primer of Musical Form," and E. Pauer's "Musical Forms" is also very useful.
 
The sequence as used by Cornell—motive, section, phrase, period—is preferable to motive, phrase, section, sentence, since the term period is usually considered to imply either eight or sixteen measures; some writers restricting the term to the latter number and calling the eight a half-period. Mathews says, motive, phrase, section, period, which we prefer to Cornell's plan.
 
A. S.—1. The principal reason that piano manufacturers have ceased to make square pianos is that the public will not buy them. They want the upright style.
 
2. Upright pianos are more modern and therefore new, but a fine square is better than many of the cheap modern uprights found in many stores to-day.
 
M. S.—The best way to teach a pupil to remember the signatures of the scales is to make him construct the latter himself, and then write them out. The fingering he should formulate also. Rule 1, the fingering of the first octave must be repeated in every other. Rule 2, the thumb should either follow or precede a black key whenever possible, but the thumb may be used twice only, in each octave, and the ring finger but once.
 
K. F. H.—The dictation required by the conservatories of music is an exercise in writing music by ear; the pupils learn to recognize simple elements first, and then combinations. We recommend for your elementary work in harmony, Stainer's primer in the Novello Series.
 
M. K.—The use oftwo pedals produces a peculiarly charming tone color. A grace note always displaces the note to which it is slurred; the latter is struck immediately after it. " Sec." over a chord is an abbreviation of secco, dry : i. e., without pedal.
 
No. The little square sign used by some editors over a note indicates a strong accent. Two notes on the same degree of the staff connected by a slur, with a dot under the last, are tied and the second note is taken off short. The figures on the pendulum of a metronome indicate the number of ticks a minute.
 
A. L. T.—The best way to bring forward a pupil in sight-reading is to make her read aloud, naming the notes. It helps pupils to read quickly to write out the scales, chords, and chromatic passages on music paper. Let the pupil construct these elements of music on the proper formulas and in their proper order. Play duets with pupils who are backward in sight-reading. There are a number of sets of very pretty duets written for the purpose.
 
E. R —List of Florentine Musicians Since 1400.—Those marked with an asterisk are best known in America. Arrigoni, Carlo, lutenist. Bardi, at whose house the idea of opera was thought out. Boccatelli, music critic. Braga, lived in Florence.* Brunelli, Antonio, (1605). Buonamici, Giuseppi, pianist* Cherubini.* Conti, Francesco. Conti, Bartolomeo. Cristofori, lived in Florence. Doni, Antonio. Doni, Giovanni. Fumagalli, Adolph.* Fumi, Vinceslao. Gagliano, Marco. Galilei, Vincenzio. Gamucci, Baldissario. Grazzini, Reginaldo.* Landino, Francesco. Layollo, Francesco. Mengozzi, Bernardo. Nardini, Pietro.* Neri, Filippo * Peri, Jacopo. Pinsuti, Carlo; lived in Florence. Puliti, Leto (writer on music). Puppo, Giuseppi. Sammartini, Pietro. Sqùarcialupi, Antonio; organ player and composer, 1430. Veracini, Antonio; violinist. Vitali, Filippo.

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