Techniques of Musical Composition 2 - 1st semester


a) To develop techniques of analysis of the components of the musical language of tonality in scores of the classical-romantic repertoire;
b) To expand the field of tonal concepts to the repertoires of popular music, rock and jazz;
c) To develop the tools of auditory analysis of the components of tonal music language;
d) To develop analytical skills through composition exercises;
e) To acquire and consolidate knowledge of musical forms.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Ernesto Donoso Collado, Isabel Pires


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language




ABROMONT, C., Guide des formes de la musique occidentale, Paris, 2010.
BOCHMANN, Chr., A Harmonia do Tonalismo, Lisboa, 2003.
LAMAS, E., Sebenta de harmonia com vista à realização do baixo-cifrado, Lisboa, 2008.
LEVINE, Mark - The Jazz Theory Book. Petaluma USA: Sher Music, 1995.
MERWE, P., “The Dances of Central Europe”, “The Nineteenth-Century Vernacular”, “Romantism”, “Modernism”, The Popular Style”, Roots of the Classical. The Popular Origins of Western Music, New York, 2004.
OWEN, H., “Polyphony in the Classical and Romantic Eras (1750-1900)”, “Polyphony in the First Half of the Twentieth Century”, Modal and Tonal Counterpoint. From Josquin to Stravinsky, London, Mexico city, New Delhi, Singapore, Sydney, Toronto, 1992, pp. 285-363.
PISTON, W., DE VOTO, M., Harmony, New York, 1987.
TEMPERLY, D., “Meter, Harmony, and Tonality in Rock”, The Cognition of Basic Musical Structures, Massachusetts, 2004, pp. 237-265.
WALLACE, B., Form in music, 2nd ed., New Jersey, 1986.

Teaching method

The classes consist of 1. theoretical component, providing explanation by the lecturer of the elements that make up the content of the course, and 2. practical component, including exercises on a) the analysis of the elementes of the syllabus in scores of the classical and romantic periods, music of the 20th century and modern times, including popular music, rock and jazz; b) the auditory analysis of the elements of the syllabus included in the music examples, and c) written exercises of theoretical and compositional nature aimed at consolidating the syllabus elements.

Evaluation method

Among the means of evaluation are: a) exercises completed outside the classes, corrected and discussed weekly in class, (30%); b) one test based on theory (40%) and one test based on practical matters (30%). The attendance required is 75% of classes.

Subject matter

a) The course aims at a practical approach, in theoretical, auditory, analytical and compositional terms, to the concepts of tonality of the classical and romantic periods, music of the 20th century and modern times. b) The repertoire encompasses examples of sacred and secular music, including popular music, rock and jazz. c) The concepts of musical theory (melody, meter and rhythm, intervals and chords, elements of musical syntax) are applied to tonal harmony and counterpoint (extended tonality, harmonic functions, chromaticism, various techniques of modulation) through the progressive lineage of musical forms (motif, phrase, period, binary forms, song forms, simple ternary forms, compound ternary forms, rondo, variations, Sonata Allegro, cyclic forms).


Programs where the course is taught: