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Cultural Literacy Test - Music I

Take your time with the following cultural literacy test. If you select the correct answer it will be highlighted in green and the related information will be shown. If the first answer selected is incorrect, it will be highlighted in yellow, indicating try again. If the second answer selected is incorrect, the correct answer will be displayed. See the Bibliography to learn more about this test.

Wrong Answer Try Again Correct
1. Which of these instruments is not in the woodwind family?
2. Ludwig van Beethoven's work includes
nine symphonies and several piano concertos
nine books of madrigals and three operas
three nocturnes and two choral pieces
four scherzos and dozens of polkas and mazurkas
3. What is a hymn?
a composition for male voices
a special kind of religious song
a tune composed for closed-mouth vocalization
a primitive kind of folk song
4. The development of the chord is part of the history of
5. Which of these are considered origins of jazz?
spirituals, Caribbean music, work songs
soul, rock and roll, rap
folk songs, atonality, program music
country dances, baroque music, monody
6. Which list arranges vocal ranges from highest to lowest?
contralto, soprano, countertenor, baritone, bass
soprano, mezzo-soprano, contralto, tenor, baritone, bass
treble, tenor, contralto, baritone, countertenor
soprano, contralto, tenor, bass, baritone
7. Handel's Messiah is an oratorio, which means that
It is performed outdoors
It does not use a full orchestra
it calls for no staging or costumes
it uses soloists in lieu of a chorus
8. Louis Armstrong is known for
his clarinet playing and orchestration
astonishing fingering feats on piano
an improvisatory trumpet and vocal style
Inventing the form called "be-bop"
9. From the sixteenth century, the word ballad has re­ferred to
a dance for two partners
any simple melody for piano or guitar
a very short piece of music
a story told in song
10. An octave is
a group of eight players
the complete work of a composer
an interval of eight notes
the distance between thumb and little finger on the piano
11. Who was Enrico Caruso?
an Italian operatic tenor
a Spanish cellist
a composer of twelve-tone music
a conductor of the New York Philharmonic
12. W. S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan are known for their
operas based on the lives of British heroes
Broadway musical comedies
orchestral arrangements for films
comic operettas
13. What is a waltz?
a dance involving changes of partner
a very slow form of polka
dance music with three beats to the bar
a stately dance in 2/4 time
14. The kind of sonata written by Beethoven or Mozart
has one movement and is performed by an orchestra
has three or four movements and is performed by one or two instruments
is in the same form as a sonata written by Bach or Handel
is a vocal work containing arias and recitatives
15. George Balanchine is primarily known as a
16. If one line of music is in counterpoint with another,
It harmonizes with the line but has a tune of its own
it parallels the line one octave higher or lower
it repeats each phrase in a minor key
it exactly reverses the melody of the other
17. An overture originally was
the first movement in a symphony
lesser vibrations when a string is plucked
a solo piece for piano or voice
the opening to an oratorio or opera
18. What is the difference between rhythm and tempo?
Rhythm involves speed, and tempo involves loud­ness.
Rhythm involves pitch, and tempo involves accent.
Rhythm involves beat, and tempo involves speed.
There is no difference; they both involve rate and pitch.
19. Which of these instruments is not in the percussion family?
snare drum
20. Duke Ellington's style of composing was novel in its
emphasis on tightly structured collective improvi­sation
lack of notation and reliance on impromptu creation
elegant and unemotional arrangements of classic tunes
Integration of Eastern harmonics and Western rhythms
21. Swan Lake is likely to be part of the repertoire of
a marching band
a ballet company
an opera company
a chamber group
22. Among the compositions of John Philip Sousa is
"The Stars and Stripes Forever"
"Maple Leaf Rag"
"Rule Britannia"
"Honeysuckle Rose"
23. What is a choir?
a symphony for mixed voices
a vocal group that performs only church music
a group of singers or the place in which they sing
a song to celebrate a religious holiday or feast day
24. The word flamenco refers to
a particular kind of music from Spain
a folk dance of southern France
a style of Portuguese folk song
a popular Cuban ballroom dance
25. Among the compositions of Giuseppe Verdi are
The Barber of Seville, Cenerentola, and William Tell
Aida, Otello, and 11 Trovatore
Lohengrin, Parsifal, and Tristan and Isolde
La Boheme, Madame Butterfly, and Tosca
Excellent. You are on your way to true cultural literacy.
Good. You have more than a passing knowledge of this subject.
Fair. You have a competent grasp of many aspects of this subject.
Poor. You could use some improvement in this area.
Below 60%
Time for literacy training.
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