Composed form

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Composed forms in vocal music are called "continuous" musical forms: the music runs without interruptions or noticeable interfaces and is built up in such a way that hardly any parts are repeated (e.g. da capo ) or supplemented (e.g. extempore ), omitted or exchanged.

The principle of through-composition has been developing since the late 18th century. For the creation of larger processes, the composer is required to work on motifs and themes , similar to the instrumental music of the 19th century.

Differentiation by genus

  • In the case of the art song or choir song , thoroughly composed means that the setting is not repeated with every text stanza , but each of these stanzas receives its own musical version. In this way, the music takes the lead in shaping the process over the text.
  • In the opera , in contrast to the numbers in the number opera , through-composed forms have a continuous musical flow that is primarily not interrupted by spoken dialogues , and more rarely by recitatives . However, this does not exclude the embedding of smaller closed forms, for example song or aria forms. For the works of Wagner and the late Verdi, one also uses the terms fully composed symphonic or fully composed music-dramatic large form . Wagner called his way of thorough composition infinite melody .


  • Till Gerrit Waidelich: The "thoroughly composed" German opera from the late 18th century to 1825. On the development and reception history of German-language operas that were "thoroughly set in music" during the heyday of the Singspiel with spoken dialogue . Dissertation University of Music "Carl Maria von Weber" Dresden 2005.