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Music Terms and Signs – Grade 2

Music Terms and Signs – Grade 2

The Syllabus includes Terms and Signs

for the ABRSM, Trinity Guild Hall, Unisa and Rock School Examinations.

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The Grade 2 syllabus includes everyhing in Grade 1, including music terms and signs, with the addition of:

1]  Simple time signatures of two two, three two, four two, three eight, and the grouping of notes and rests within these times.

Triplets, and triplet note groups with rests. Questions will include the composition of simple fourbar rhythms starting on the first beat of the bar and using a given opening.

2] Extension of the stave to include two ledger lines below and above each stave.

3] Composition: Questions will include the composition of simple four bar rhythms starting on the first beat of the bar and using a given opening.

4] Extension of the stave to include two ledger lines below and above each stave.

5] Construction of the minor scale (harmonic or melodic at candidate’s choice, but candidates will be expected to know which form they are using). Scales and key signatures of the major keys of A, Bb and Eb, and the minor keys of A, E and D, with their tonic triads (root position), Degrees of the scale (number only), and intervals above the tonic (by number only).

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6] More music terms and signs in common use.

Italian term Abbreviation English meaing
a in, by, for, to, in the style of
al, alla in the manner of, to the
allargando broadening – getting a little slow and louder
andantino slightly faster than andante
assai very
con, col without
dolce sweet, soft
e, ed and
espressivo express.espr expressive, with expression
fortepiano loud then immediately soft
giocoso playful, merry
grave very slow, solemn
grazioso graceful
larghetto rather slow but not a slow as largo
largo slow and stately
ma but
maestoso majestic
meno less
molto very, much
mosso, moto movement
non not as quick as allegro – fairly quick
piu more
presto fast
senza without
sforzando, sforzato forced, accented
simile sim in the same way
sostenuto sustained
tenuto held
troppo too much
vivace, vivo lively, quick

Semi-staccato or half-staccato.

Music Terms and Signs Grade 2: The use of the half staccato / semi-staccato dots withing slurs in music notation.

The use of the half staccato / semi-staccato dots within slurs in music notation.

The staccato dots are written inside a slur. The notes should be slightly separated (semi-staccato), but less than regular staccato.

Accents in musicMarcato

Music Terms and Signs Grade 2: The use of accent sign - marcato in music notation.

The use of accent sign – marcato in music notation.

The notes marked with the accent symbols as illustrated below are accented and slightly separated.

Tenuto – held note

Music Terms and Signs Grade 2: The use of tenuto or held notes in music notation.

The use of tenuto or held notes in music notation.

Tenuto means that thenote is held with some pressure.

Staccatissimo which is extreme staccato

Music Terms and Signs Grade 2: The use of staccatissimo - extreme staccato in music notation.

The use of staccatissimo – extreme staccato in music notation.

In extreme staccato the note is somewhat shortened in duration because of the detachment. The wedge symbol is used above or inverted below the note head as indicated in the illustration below.

Abbreviations used in music notation:

fp  –  fortepiano – loud then immediately soft

sf   /  sfz –  sforzando / sforzato – forced / accented

 

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