7 Types Of Musical Compositions

Musical Compositions

Every great composer has contributed to laying down the foundation of classical music that we know today. Some of the most famous composers in history gave birth to a variety of musical compositions that are still studied and performed at major classical events. As the aspiring composer you are, here are the top musical compositions you must learn about as a music student.


Aria is a performance where the lead singer shows off their vocal skills, accompanied by an orchestra or instrumental music. Only one performer can perform Aria in a single performance, which makes it a self-contained art. However, Aria can be a part of something bigger, like a concert.

Musical Compositions


In a concerto, a soloist and an orchestra perform together under a healthy challenge. The solo instrument is usually a violin, cello, or piano, while the other side has the entire orchestra. You can hear two sides of artists playing independently and together at the same moment.


Cadenza is similar to Aria, but it is made for musicians. Here the musicians show off their orchestral or instrumental skill in a solo play. A cadenza consists of one or two movements where the orchestra abruptly stops playing, and the soloist takes over. The orchestra can join once again after the soloist ends their piece.

Musical Compositions


Opera is the most popular classical music composition that you may already know about. It is a combination of drama and music which takes place in a theatre. Note that opera and musical theatres are not the same. The musical works in opera are composed while making it a narrative genre. Musical theatres focused on the stories, and the music gets added later.


Listening to a symphony can lift up your spirits. However, today every musical composition is loosely denoted as a symphony, which is not accurate. A symphony is a composition of four movements in the form of an orchestra. Most of the symphonies consist of a sonata in the middle. Beethoven’s no.3 is the most popular symphony of all time, which is believed to have changed how music is perceived.

Musical Compositions


Cantata is a singing composition. It is accompanied by instrumentals and has multiple movements. However, the focus remains on the vocal compositions than the music. Most cantatas are performed by choirs, but today we can find several cantatas performed by solo singers with a group and an orchestra.


Overture is a musical composition that takes place whenever a new musical composition is made. It is considered an independent instrumental work for whoever presents it. Earlier, the operas opened with short instrumental pieces. The overture was originally meant to be played when the audience finds their seats to get ready for the main event. Even today, it is considered an appetizer for the audience while they wait for the main event.

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