So in for say a sentence structure, we have the basic idea phrase, and then it repeats the basic idea again. However, the second repetition basic idea can be either an exact repetition, state and response or modal sequence. What is state and response, and modal sequence?

  • It might help if you could give a little more context about where you heard these terms, or maybe a link to some material? – topo Reinstate Monica Dec 13 '15 at 12:02
  • There isn't really any material, the instructor gave us a 2-page theory analysis information about sentences and periods. It explained about Half cadences, Perfect authentic cadence and such. From my understanding, the information came from William e. Caplin's Formal analysis, or a big blue book as my TA put it. The class was not given the blue book but a different theory book. And what I don't understand is what state and response/modal sequence are when a basic idea is repeated. I couldn't find it online so I was hoping someone would know on here. – user25207 Dec 14 '15 at 1:40

In music, you can think of phrases like sentences. Musical phrases, like sentences, can have antecedents (call/statement) and consequents (response).

When your instructor is referring to "statement and response", this is what they mean: that the antecedent of the phrase states a declarative gesture. The response is usually contrary to the statement and completes the idea. Take "twinkle twinkle little star":

C C G G A A G = Statement (rising gesture)

F F E E D D C = Response (falling gesture)

A modal sequence is when the music continues a rhythmic idea, usually keeping the same or similar intervals. Modal sequences usually rise or fall. Listen to anything by JS Bach and you'll hear modal sequences everywhere.

In the future, ask your professor or your TA's for help before it gets too late - they will know all of this stuff.

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