Rhythm & Melody

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This lesson is part of the Rhythm, Meter & Form category.


  • Students will be familiar with how melody and rhythm interact and influence one another.
  • Students will be familiar with the concepts of melodic and agogic accents.


Class Activities[edit]

  • Discussion and definition of dynamic, melodic and agogic accents
  • Analysis of melodies which feature melodic accents and agogic accents, especially vocal lines where these accents can be analyzed alongside poetic meter and grammar
  • Discussion of meaning deriving from accent and metrical deviations from a melody’s inherent poetic meter.
  • Improvisation of melodies with different types of melodic and agogic accents


  • Analysis of melodic lines for various implied and written accents
  • Writing a melody which features a particular type of accent
  • Writing a melody in a musical meter that contrasts with its inherent poetic meter.