Coda (music)

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In music, a coda ( [ ˈ k o ː d a ] ) (Italian for "tail", plural code) is a passage that brings a piece (or a movement) to an end. Technically, it is an expanded cadence. It may be as simple as a few measures, or as complex as an entire section. [1]

Contents

In classical music

Coda from Mozart's Piano Sonata no. 7 in C Major, K. 309, I, mm. 152-155 Play (help*info)
. Mozart- Coda- Sonata in C Major, K. 309, I.png
Coda from Mozart's Piano Sonata no. 7 in C Major, K. 309, I, mm. 152–155 Loudspeaker.svg Play  .

The presence of a coda as a structural element in a movement is especially clear in works written in particular musical forms. Codas were commonly used in both sonata form and variation movements during the Classical era. In a sonata form movement, the recapitulation section will, in general, follow the exposition in its thematic content, while adhering to the home key. The recapitulation often ends with a passage that sounds like a termination, paralleling the music that ended the exposition; thus, any music coming after this termination will be perceived as extra material, i.e., as a coda. In works in variation form, the coda occurs following the last variation and will be very noticeable as the first music not based on the theme.

One of the ways that Beethoven extended and intensified Classical practice was to expand the coda sections, producing a final section sometimes of equal musical weight to the foregoing exposition, development, and recapitulation sections and completing the musical argument. For one famous example, see the finale of Symphony No. 8 (Beethoven). [3] [ page needed ]

Musical purpose

Charles Burkhart suggests that the reason codas are common, even necessary, is that, in the climax of the main body of a piece, a "particularly effortful passage", often an expanded phrase, is often created by "working an idea through to its structural conclusions" and that, after all this momentum is created, a coda is required to "look back" on the main body, allow listeners to "take it all in", and "create a sense of balance." [4]

Codetta

Codetta (Italian for "little tail", the diminutive form) has a similar purpose to the coda, but on a smaller scale, concluding a section of a work instead of the work as a whole. A typical codetta concludes the exposition and recapitulation sections of a work in sonata form, following the second (modulated) theme, or the closing theme (if there is one). Thus, in the exposition, it usually appears in the secondary key, but, in the recapitulation, in the primary key. The codetta ordinarily closes with a perfect cadence in the appropriate key, confirming the tonality. If the exposition is repeated, the codetta is also, but sometimes it has its ending slightly changed, depending on whether it leads back to the exposition or into the development sections.

History

Cauda, a Latin word meaning "tail", "edge" or "trail" is the root of coda and is used in the study of conductus of the 12th and 13th centuries. The cauda was a long melisma on one of the last syllables of the text, repeated in each strophe. Conducti were traditionally divided into two groups, conductus cum cauda and conductus sine cauda (Latin: "conductus with cauda", "conductus without cauda"), based on the presence of the melisma. Thus, the cauda provided a conclusionary role, also similar to the modern coda.

Many songs in rock and other genres of popular music have sections identifiable as codas. A coda in these genres is sometimes referred to as an "outro", while in jazz, modern church music and barbershop arranging it is commonly called a "tag". One of the most famous codas is found in the 1968 single "Hey Jude" by The Beatles. The coda lasted nearly four minutes, making the song's full length at just over the seven-minute mark.

In music notation

Coda sign Coda sign.svg
Coda sign

In music notation, the coda symbol, which resembles a set of crosshairs, is used as a navigation marker, similar to the dal segno sign. It is used where the exit from a repeated section is within that section rather than at the end. The instruction "To Coda" indicates that, upon reaching that point during the final repetition, the performer is to jump immediately to the separate section headed with the coda symbol. For example, this can be used to provide a special ending for the final verse of a song.

The coda sign is encoded in the Musical Symbols block of Unicode as U+1D10C MUSICAL SYMBOL CODA: [5] 𝄌

See also

Notes

  1. Benward & Saker (2009). Music in Theory and Practice: Volume II, p.355. Eighth Edition. ISBN   978-0-07-310188-0.
  2. Benward & Saker (2009), p.151.
  3. For discussion of this coda, and of codas in general, see Rosen, Charles (1988) Sonata Forms, 2nd edition. New York: Norton.
  4. Burkhart, Charles. "The Phrase Rhythm of Chopin's A-flat Major Mazurka, Op. 59, No. 2" in Stein, Deborah (2005). Engaging Music: Essays in Music Analysis, p.12. New York: Oxford University Press, ISBN   0-19-517010-5.
  5. PDF of Musical Symbols block from the unicode consortium

Related Research Articles

Sonata form is a musical structure consisting of three main sections: an exposition, a development, and a recapitulation. It has been used widely since the middle of the 18th century.

The Piano Sonata No. 16 in C major, K. 545, by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was described by Mozart himself in his own thematic catalogue as "for beginners", and it is sometimes known by the nickname Sonata facile or Sonata semplice.

Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13, commonly known as Sonata Pathétique, was written in 1798 when the composer was 27 years old, and was published in 1799. It has remained one of his most celebrated compositions. Beethoven dedicated the work to his friend Prince Karl von Lichnowsky. Although commonly thought to be one of the few works to be named by the composer himself, it was actually named Grande sonate pathétique by the publisher, who was impressed by the sonata's tragic sonorities.

In Western musical theory, a cadence is "a melodic or harmonic configuration that creates a sense of resolution [finality or pause]". A harmonic cadence is a progression of two chords that concludes a phrase, section, or piece of music. A rhythmic cadence is a characteristic rhythmic pattern that indicates the end of a phrase.

Development (music)

In music, development is a process by which a musical idea is communicated in the course of a composition. It refers to the transformation and restatement of initial material. Development is often contrasted with musical variation, which is a slightly different means to the same end. Development is carried out upon portions of material treated in many different presentations and combinations at a time, while variation depends upon one type of presentation at a time.

Sonata rondo form is a musical form often used during the Classical music era. As the name implies, it is a blend of sonata form and rondo form.

Piano Sonata No. 21 (Beethoven)

Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 21 in C major, Op. 53, known as the Waldstein, is one of the three most notable sonatas of his middle period. Completed in summer 1804 and surpassing Beethoven's previous piano sonatas in its scope, the Waldstein is a key early work of Beethoven's "Heroic" decade (1803–1812) and set a standard for piano composition in the grand manner.

Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 3 in C major, Op. 2, No. 3, is a sonata written for solo piano, composed in 1795. It is dedicated to Joseph Haydn and is often referred to as Beethoven's first virtuosic piano sonata. The three Op. 2 sonatas all contain four movements each, an unusual length which seems to show that Beethoven was aspiring towards composing a symphony. It is both the weightiest and longest of the three Op. 2 sonatas, lasting over 25 minutes, presenting many difficulties, including difficult trills, awkward hand movements, and forearm rotation. It is Beethoven's second longest piano sonata in his early period, only to Beethoven's Grand Sonata in E Major, Op. 7, published a year later.

Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 5 in C minor, Op. 10, No. 1 was composed some time during 1796–98.

Piano Sonata No. 25 (Beethoven) Piano sonata written by Beethoven

The Piano Sonata No. 25 in G major, Op. 79, a work in three movements, was written by Ludwig van Beethoven in 1809. It is alternatively titled "Cuckoo" or "Sonatina," and it is notable for its shortness. A typical performance lasts only about 10 minutes.

Recapitulation (music)

In music theory, the recapitulation is one of the sections of a movement written in sonata form. The recapitulation occurs after the movement's development section, and typically presents once more the musical themes from the movement's exposition. This material is most often recapitulated in the tonic key of the movement, in such a way that it reaffirms that key as the movement's home key.

Piano Sonata No. 1 (Beethoven)

Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 1 in F minor, Op. 2, No. 1, was written in 1795 and dedicated to Joseph Haydn.

The cauda is a characteristic feature of songs in the conductus style of a cappella music which flourished between the mid-12th and the mid-13th century. The conductus style placed strict rules on composition, and some such rules were devoted to the cauda, which came at the penultimate syllable of each verse. It takes the form of a lengthy section of counterpoint - where several simultaneous melodies are combined into one - slurred over the one syllable. The cauda was repeated in each verse.

In music, the conclusion is the ending of a composition and may take the form of a coda or outro.

The Piano Sonata in A minor D.845 (Op.42) by Franz Schubert is a sonata for solo piano. Composed in May 1825 and entitled Premiere Grande Sonata, it is the first of three sonatas published during the composer's lifetime, the others being D.850 and D.894. Conceived as a set, these works were composed during what was reportedly a period of relatively good health and spirits for Schubert, and are praised for their quality and ambition. This first sonata in particular marks a significant step toward the composer’s mature piano sonata style; the format and several characteristic stylistic elements continue through the last.

Schuberts last sonatas last major compositions for solo piano by Franz Schubert

Franz Schubert's last three piano sonatas, D 958, 959 and 960, are the composer's last major compositions for solo piano. They were written during the last months of his life, between the spring and autumn of 1828, but were not published until about ten years after his death, in 1838–39. Like the rest of Schubert's piano sonatas, they were mostly neglected in the 19th century. By the late 20th century, however, public and critical opinion had changed, and these sonatas are now considered among the most important of the composer's mature masterpieces. They are part of the core piano repertoire, appearing regularly on concert programs and recordings.

Sonata Theory is an approach to the description of sonata form in terms of individual works' treatment of generic expectations. For example, it is normative for the secondary theme of a minor-mode sonata to be in either the key of III or v. If a composer chooses to break this norm in a given piece, that is a deviation that requires analytical and interpretive explanation. The essentials of the theory are presented by its developers, James Hepokoski and Warren Darcy, in the book Elements of Sonata Theory, which won the Society for Music Theory's Wallace Berry Award in 2008. Although the theory is particularly designed to treat late-eighteenth-century works such as those by Mozart, Haydn, and Beethoven, many of its principles are applicable to works in sonata form from later centuries.

Piano Quartet No. 3 (Brahms)

The Piano Quartet No. 3 in C minor, Op. 60, completed by Johannes Brahms in 1875, is scored for piano, violin, viola and cello. It is sometimes called the Werther Quartet after Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther.

Transition (music)

A transition is a passage of music composed to link one section of music to another. Transitions often function as a moment of transformation and may, or may not in themselves, introduce new, musical material.

A slow movement is a form in a multi-movement musical piece. Generally, the second movement of a piece will be written as a slow movement, although composers occasionally write other movements as a slow movement as well. The tempo of a slow movement can vary from largo to andante. It is usually in the dominant, subdominant, parallel, or relative key of the musical work's main key.

References