7. Making Music Come to Life

Published by Jason Yang on

Make music come to life - Jason Yang Pianist

Making Music Come to Life – Dynamics, Italian Words, Articulation

There are plenty of things we can do to make our performances sound more interesting and engaging for our audience. Most of the time, the composer already has these things written on the music for us!

Dynamics (volume)

We’ll often see certain fancy looking letters dotted over our music. These are dynamics which refer to a change in volume. Here is a summary of some of the most used dynamic markings in music.

dynamics - making music come to life - jason yang pianist

We can adjust the volume of our piano music by pressing softer or harder on the keys. Please don’t be turning constantly adjusting the volume settings on your keyboards!

Italian Words (speed)

You will often see certain words on the top left your music. These words are usually in Italian and tell you the speed or mood of the piece.

Here are some of the most used Italian words and what they mean in relation to your music making.

italian words - making music come to life - jason yang pianist

Articulation (pronunciation)

To make music more interesting we can add the following articulation marks. The top line shows us what we’ll see on the music while the bottom line tells us how it should be played.

The articulation marks go in this order: staccato, normal, tenuto, pause.

Articulations - making music come to life - jason yang pianist

You may have noticed the curved line joining the last two notes on the bottom stave. This is a tie. We’ll be covering this more in the next post.

Categories: Music Theory


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