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8th Grade Band Music Vocabulary
(Comprehension of 6th and 7th Grade Band music vocabulary is also required.)
Marking Period 1
Marking Period 3
chromatic – moving in half-step intervals
divisi – a divided part; some players play the top
notes while others play the bottom notes
half-step – the smallest common interval
interval – the distance between two notes
melody – a succession of musical tones that
represents the linear/horizontal elements of
a musical composition
phrase – A short portion of a melody which
expresses a musical idea, comparable to
a sentence or line of poetry.
scale – a series of whole steps and half-steps
written using the music alphabet
whole step – an interval consisting of two
consecutive half-steps
arrangement – an adaptation of a piece of music;
bands often play arrangements of pieces
originally written for orchestra
composition – the creation of music that can be
performed later , usually through writtendown notation
improvisation – spontaneous composition of
music through playing or singing
musical score – the written depiction of all the
parts of a musical piece with the parts
stacked vertically and rhythmically aligned
orchestration – the choice of instruments used
to play music
transposition – taking a composition in one key
and putting it in another
Marking Period 2
Marking Period 4
arpeggio – notes of a chord sounded one after
chord – two or more notes sounded at the same
dominant – the fifth note of a scale (“SOL”)
harmony – two or more notes played or sung at
the same time
leading tone – the seventh note of a scale (“TI”)
octave – the 8th note above or below a given
pitch; it is the same letter of the music
subdominant – the fourth note of a scale (“FA”)
tonic – the first note of a scale (“DO”)
binary form – music with two different sections
concerto – a piece for a soloist and orchestra
ternary form – music with three sections;
usually Section A, flowed by a contrasting
Section B, then Section A again
theme and variations – a type of musical form in
which a main melody (theme) is followed by
different version of the theme (variations)
trio – the third theme in a march; typically a
contrasting section
suite – a collection of short musical pieces
unified by a common element
symphony – a composition for large orchestra,
usually in four movements