Show off your theory chops with my weekly challenge! You’ll find a new question here every Monday. Please comment to post your reply.
This week’s challenge:
This is from J. S. Bach’s Toccata and Fugue in D minor. What type of cadence is highlighted in red?
Listen to the Audio
ANSWER for 6/7/21
This is a Phrygian Cadence, or Phrygian Half Cadence. Most often seen in minor keys, we go from a iv chord in first inversion to V (Gm/Bb to A). Notice that the bass drops down a half-step, which is reminiscent of the first two notes in the Phrygian mode (hence the cadence’s name).
You can brush up on your cadences with all new lessons in the Diatonic Harmony Course! Sign up for a monthly subscription for full access to all video lessons, worksheets, and answer keys. Also, this year I’ll be adding new lessons on modes. I created Breaking Barlines with one thing in mind: making music theory effective and FUN!