Program Music Vocabulary
Absolute Music - Music that is not Progam music. Music that does not tell a story or set a particular mood.
Dynamics - The loudness or softness of a composition.
Finale - The last section of a composition
Impressionism - Term applied to composers such as Debussy, Delius, and Ravel who were composing in the same general time and place that the impressionist painters were active.
Improvisation - Term referring to the spontaneous performance of music without previous preparation or any written notes.
Program Music - Music that tells a story, paints a picture with music or sets a particular mood.
Musical Climax - The point of highest tension or excitement in a composition
Suite - A group of compositions with one common theme or story, designed to be performed as a set. Carnival of the Animals is a good example of this.
Symphonic Poem - A one-movement orchestral genre that develops a poetic idea, suggests a scene, or creates a mood. The symphonic poem is generally associated with the Romantic era.
Timbre - The characteristic sound of a voice or instrument.
Theme - A short reoccuring melody in a composition. Themes help to create form.
Tone Poem - another term for Symphonic Poem