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2 WCT Fingerprints

If you are trying to write music in the Western Classical Tradition (and more specifically in the style of Haydn and Mozart) you should use the common phrase structures and follow the basic conventions outlined elsewhere on this site. In addition, there are a number of common features that are found in nearly all Classical pieces and if you include them in your composition it will sound much more authentic. Some of the main WCT fingerprints are listed below, with links to explanation and examples (mostly Classical string quartets but a few others as well):

Idiomatic modulations (including pivot modulations)


Some more advanced fingerprints for Romantic Chromatic Harmony (PDF)

Notes on codas:

Quick Guide to Codas and Codettas

  1. Coda Examples Introduction
  2. Coda Example Beethoven Septet
  3. Notes_Beethoven_Op18_no_2
  4. Coda Example Haydn 1
  5. Coda Example Mozart K516
  6. Notes_Beethoven_Op95
  7. Notes_Mozart_K516
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