Repetition and its Importance in Music

     Generally speaking, and in the world of art, repetition reminds and accentuates norms and values, repeating sensations and emotions such as fear, insecurity, anguish, love, happiness, etc., experiences that are lived repeatedly. Repetition has in its essence memories that may evoke physical and/or emotional reactions. Repetition is thus a constant in our lives – repetition of images, forms, motives, ideas, structure (in the case of music), etc. Its purpose is to emphasize or give security, to confirm the authenticity of the self, to regulate behaviour, social norm and desires.

     In sum, repetition has an ethic but also has an aesthetical dimension. As seen, music as an artistic form also elicits emotions inducing the listener to remember, to return and amplify those emotions that were felt before. Such event occurs because of associative memory that puts individuals in contact with similar sonic and visual experiences that are contraposed. But it is also a way of remind the listeners of your music what you are talking about or what you are trying to express, a way of confirming what you mean with your musical statement. So, it is common practice in music to work with motifs and musical ideas and then repeat, expand, re-use and recycle them with variations.

Here is a video where I explore this concept by using musical examples:

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