Audio: part (0:06)

Figure: part

part plays four part harmony. The part figure shows the score notated in three different short score formats:

  1. Bar 1 is played by a 12 string guitar. The score displays all four parts in the same staff.
  2. Bar 2 is played by a virginal. The score displays the lowest pitched note in the bass staff and the rest of the parts in the treble staff.
  3. Bar 3 is sung by a choir. The score is in typical SATB format. The treble staff shows the soprano part with an upward pointing note stem and the alto part with a downward pointing stem and the bass staff shows the tenor and bass parts with upward and downward pointing stems respectively.

A part is a piece of music written for an individual voice or instrument.

A part is a series of notes played by a single instrument or sung by a solo singer. A part is also called a voice. It is sometimes also called a melody, a line, or a melody line. All these terms are interchangeable. Part is used throughout the guide to mean anything sung by a solo singer or played by a solo musician.

Harmony consists of two or more parts. Two part harmony contains two parts, three part harmony contains three parts, four part harmony contains four parts and so on.

The number of parts in a harmony is determined by the maximum number of simultaneous and differing notes. Two part harmony contains a maximum of two simultaneous notes which are different, three part harmony contains a maximum of three, and so on. This does not necessarily mean each part always contains a different note to another part. Sometimes two parts contain different notes, sometimes they contain identical notes.