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Choose the letter which begins musical term that you would like to learn about:


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Octave
The eighth tone above a given pitch, with twice as many vibrations per second, or below a given pitch, with half as many vibrations.

Octet
A piece for eight instruments or voices.

Open fifth
A triad without a third.

Open strings
Strings are not stopped, fingured, or fretted.

Opus, Op
The term, meaning work, is used by composers to show the chronological order of their works, e.g. Op. 1, Op. 2.

Orchestra
A large group of musicians made up of string, brass, woodwind, and percussion instruments.

Orchestration
The art of writing, arranging, or scoring for the orchestra.

Ornamentation
Note or notes added to the original melodic line for embellishment and added interest.

Ornaments
Melodic embellishments, either written or improvised.

Ossia
"Or." Indicating an alternative passage or version.

Ostinato
A repeated melodic or rhythmic pattern, frequently appearing in the bass line.

Ottava
Octave.

Ottava alta
(8va) An octave higher.

Ottave bassa
(8va or 8vb) An octave lower.

Overtones
The almost inaudible higher tones which occur with the fundamental tone. They are the result of the vibration of small sections of a string (instrument) or a column of air. Other general terms for overtones are partials and harmonics.

Overture
The introductory music for an opera, oratorio or ballet. A concert overture is an independent work.


Welcome to the O'Connor Music Studio Web Page! Welcome to the O'Connor Music Studio Web Page!


A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Some definitions and terms excerpted from
Belwin Pocket Dictionary of Music: Music Theory Dictionary
By Dr. William Lee
Students may purchase a copy for home use at cost
A line of music

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  The O'Connor Music Studio
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in Fairfax, Virginia
Now in our 35th year
~~
Piano, Organ
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