Composing a Basso Ostinato with Tonicizations and Modulations


Copyright Justin Henry Rubin © 2005

Note that these examples are modeled after the English Baroque practice of implementing a ritornello variation (or a variation that is used as a refrain - see the Grounds of Henry Purcell). This is an interesting alternative to the paired variation model that is more commonly found in the German Baroque (see Buxtedhude's Chaconne in e minor). Student composers are encouraged to explore both models.

AUDIO and MIDI files can be listened to on this page or downloaded separately here.

This first example incorporates a tonicization to the supertonic key region within the course of a variation.


The second example integrates a modulation (to the relative minor in this case) through a modification of the basso ostinato.


Go back to the first Basso Ostinato page.

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