GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Classical Music for Beginners => Topic started by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 03:50:35 AM

Title: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 03:50:35 AM
I have a question, if I write e.g.: a Nocturne and a Sonata, can I put them in the same Op.? and how do I name it? Sonata No. 1, Op. 1 & Nocturne No. 1, Op. 1 or Sonata No. 1, Op. 1 & Nocturne No. 2, Op. 2?
The first one seems confusing, but the second one seems kind of illogical...

Sorry if anything or everything I just said is completely incorrect, I only just got into writing and I've never been the type to actually pay a lot of attention to the names and the numbering, I just enjoy listening and playing.
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: amw on July 13, 2017, 03:59:17 AM
"Op. 1 no. 1" and "Op. 1 no. 2" is what you're looking for I think.

Musical pieces were put in the same opus number when they were published together as a volume—each publication gets its own opus number. It was usually publishers who assigned the opus numbers; most publishers stopped doing this sometime in the late 19th/early 20th centuries though. Composers who gave their own pieces opus numbers often had different considerations in mind: either trying to number all their works in chronological order, or to keep related works together, or even to pass older pieces off as newly written ones or to sell them in different markets (thus why e.g. some Dvořák symphonies and Haydn string quartets have multiple opus numbers).
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 04:27:35 AM
thanks! and is it normal to have a normal name together with a numbering? for example my first written piece would be Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'.
Or is it better to just have Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 or just 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: bwv 1080 on July 13, 2017, 04:29:20 AM
although today most composers don't use opus numbers
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 04:32:22 AM
although today most composers don't use opus numbers
I have noticed that yeah, but I really like the Opus numbers, it's also for me a lot easier to remember and more organized than having to remember everything by only the name, I already get confused with the names of 2 pieces I play a lot that are by the same composer, using numbers makes more sence to me, I guess
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: ritter on July 13, 2017, 04:40:33 AM
thanks! and is it normal to have a normal name together with a numbering? for example my first written piece would be Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'.
Or is it better to just have Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 or just 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'
Intriguing and interesting title! But try to spell it "Der Tod und die Freiheit", if I may suggest (i.e., Tod with a "d" at the end, not a "t"). Tod means death, tot means dead.

Cheers,



Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 04:47:00 AM
Intriguing and interesting title! But try to spell is "Der Tod und die Freiheit", if I may suggest. (i.e., Tod with a "d" at the end, not a "t". Tod means death, tot means dead).

Cheers,




Oh sorry hahaha, I'm Dutch, and my German ist sehr schlecht, Entschuldigung
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: amw on July 13, 2017, 04:52:39 AM
thanks! and is it normal to have a normal name together with a numbering? for example my first written piece would be Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'.
Or is it better to just have Nocturne in E minor Op. 1 No. 1 or just 'Der Tot Und Die Freiheit'
That's a pure preference thing. What I see most commonly from titles given by composers is something like Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne, Op. 1 no. 1. Generally when a title is unofficial or was given by a publisher or biographer or whatever, it comes after the opus number to show that the composer did not sanction it him/herself (e.g. Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74 'Pathetique'—the title was given posthumously by Tchaikovsky's brother, taken from private correspondence that Tchaikovsky didn't intend to be made public) whereas a title given by the composer is part of the name before the opus number (e.g. Manfred Symphony, Op. 58).
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 04:57:08 AM
That's a pure preference thing. What I see most commonly from titles given by composers is something like Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne, Op. 1 no. 1. Generally when a title is unofficial or was given by a publisher or biographer or whatever, it comes after the opus number to show that the composer did not sanction it him/herself (e.g. Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74 'Pathetique'—the title was given posthumously by Tchaikovsky's brother, taken from private correspondence that Tchaikovsky didn't intend to be made public) whereas a title given by the composer is part of the name before the opus number (e.g. Manfred Symphony, Op. 58).
Thank you very much! You've been most helpful!
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: NikF on July 13, 2017, 05:00:55 AM
That's a pure preference thing. What I see most commonly from titles given by composers is something like Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne, Op. 1 no. 1. Generally when a title is unofficial or was given by a publisher or biographer or whatever, it comes after the opus number to show that the composer did not sanction it him/herself (e.g. Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74 'Pathetique'—the title was given posthumously by Tchaikovsky's brother, taken from private correspondence that Tchaikovsky didn't intend to be made public) whereas a title given by the composer is part of the name before the opus number (e.g. Manfred Symphony, Op. 58).

If I had a monocle I would be popping it.
Good stuff.
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: k a rl h e nn i ng on July 13, 2017, 05:28:03 AM
I have noticed that yeah, but I really like the Opus numbers, it's also for me a lot easier to remember and more organized than having to remember everything by only the name, I already get confused with the names of 2 pieces I play a lot that are by the same composer, using numbers makes more sence to me, I guess

I agree, it is helpful for me to keep things straight.
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: bwv 1080 on July 13, 2017, 05:29:59 AM
If you really want to be pretentious, get a buddy to catalog your works with his last name, so if your buddy's last name is, say Jansen
 Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne,  J.1
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: MFKittyBooy on July 13, 2017, 05:32:57 AM
If you really want to be pretentious, get a buddy to catalog your works with his last name, so if your buddy's last name is, say Jansen
 Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne,  J.1
That's getting a bit too much for me hahaha
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: ritter on July 13, 2017, 05:50:07 AM
If you really want to be pretentious, get a buddy to catalog your works with his last name, so if your buddy's last name is, say Jansen
 Der Tod und die Freiheit: Nocturne,  J.1
And you should keep some works apart as "WoO", to be included in an appendix of the Jansen catalogue  ;)... It's a good option, should you wish to disavow any early works you're not completely satisfied with in the future.

Please don't take this the wrong way, MFKittyBooy, but Adorno once said of Wagner that "he was the author of his complete works from the outset". It seems to me you're trying to achieve something like that as well. As a non-composer, I can only recommend (and hope) you write the music you feel like writing, and worry about the cataloguing sometime later.

Cheers,
Title: Re: Naming Classical Pieces
Post by: RebLem on May 05, 2018, 11:08:29 PM
Most composers who don't use opus numbers anymore still want listeners to have some idea of where specific works fit in the chronology of the composer's ouvre.  So, generally, the opus number has been replaced by the year of composition.