Understanding Music Form

July 10, 2018





Victoria Williams

This video accompanies the lesson on how to compose a minor pentatonic piece here http://blog.mymusictheory.com/2014/ho…

A pentatonic piece is built on just five different notes. A minor pentatonic scale uses the notes D, F, G, A and C (or those notes transposed to another key), and the keynote is D.

It’s really simple to compose a piece based on the minor pentatonic scale, because all the notes blend together harmoniously. It doesn’t matter which note of the minor pentatonic scale you write against another, it will always sound pleasant, with no harsh clashes or dissonances.

To make an effective pentatonic composition, use a nice combination of instruments and focus on using a variety of rhythms. Use cross rhythms (syncopation) for an interesting effect.

Andrew Schartmann

For more analysis, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D97ab…

or visit http://www.drewsical.com

In this video the following three topics are addressed:

1) Why study musical form?
2) How is form usually taught and what is wrong with this method?
3) Basic units of formal hierarchy.


London Symphony Orchestra ·193 videos

A quintet of LSO musicians, led by animateur Rachel Leach, explore the third movement of Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor, Opus 34.

This video is a specially produced recording of LSO Discovery’s annual A-level seminar, and will be of particular use to students taking their A-level music exam (Edexcel syllabus) in summer 2011.

Animateur: Rachel Leach

First Violin: Rhys Watkins
Second Violin: Louise Shackelton
Violia: Malcolm Johnston
Cello: Jonny Byers
Piano: Liz Burley

For more information on LSO Discovery’s work for teachers and schools, please see http://lso.co.uk/page/3154/For+School…

YaleCourses·1,236 videos

Listening to Music (MUSI 112)

A brief foray into the formal characteristics of contemporary popular music is used to launch this lecture on musical form. After a discussion of the “verse-chorus” form often used in popular music, Professor Wright proceeds to take students into the realm of classical music, focusing particularly on ternary form and sonata-allegro form. Throughout his detailed explanation of sonata-allegro form, he also elaborates upon some harmonic concepts describing, for example, the relationship between relative major and minor keys. This lecture draws its musical examples from ‘N Sync, Mozart, and Beethoven.

00:00 – Chapter 1. Verse-Chorus Form in Popular Music
05:56 – Chapter 2. Introduction to Form in Classical Music
12:18 – Chapter 3. Ternary Form
18:00 – Chapter 4. The Sonata-Allegro Form in Mozart’s “A Little Night Music”
36:19 – Chapter 5. The Sonata-Allegro Form in Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://oyc.yale.edu

This course was recorded in Fall 2008.

artofcomposing·11 videos

Education Portal·183 videos


The Daily Beethoven·419 videos

Performed by the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen with Paavo Järvi
Analysed with the assistance of Robert Greenberg’s Teaching Company Wordscore guide
For transcription of analysis see:

Note: at this time the annotations will not appear on mobile devices, so if possible please watch from a computer.

For more videos of this type see:
Color-Coded Analysis of Beethoven’s Music (INDEX):