Notes Style Sheet


  • Beethoven's opus 131 is a fine quartet. ("opus" is spelled out if no genre or title immediately precedes or follows "opus.")  But: Beethoven's String Quartet op. 131 (or Beethoven's op. 131 String Quartet) is a magnificent work. (Genre or title immediately precedes or follows "op.")
  • Do not capitalize op., opus, or no. unless they are capitalized as part of a title in a bibliographic citation (CMS16, 8.191): Symphony no. 41; the op. 67 quartet; Symphony no. 8 in B Minor, op. 47
  • Do capitalize Major and Minor when included as part of a title (see preceding example)
  • Fifth Symphony; Fifth and Sixth symphonies; the Seventh (based on NGD2 practice); the symphony; the Andante of the Fourth Symphony (Holoman 1.9); Beethoven's symphonies nos. 1–5
  • "Eroica" Symphony"Italian" Symphony"Diabelli" Variations"Hammerklavier" Sonata (Holoman2, 1.5; and example in CMS16, 8.190: popular titles are put in roman in quotes)
  • Varied Trio for violin, piano, and percussion (1986–87); Grand Duo for violin and piano (1988). Do not capitalize the name(s) of instrument(s) and voice(s) that follow the title of a work.
  • act 3, scene 2 (CMS16, 8.182)
  • prelude to act 3 of Tristan und Isolde; overture to Tannhäuser
  • the Prelude and Fugue in G Minor; the prelude; the fugue
  • No. vs. no.:
    • Use No. (capitalized) when "No. X" represents whatever title the piece, movement, or set piece might have within a larger work or collection; e.g., including two lovely ones by Purcell (Nos. 6 and 37 in Britten's score).
    • Use no. (uncapitalized) when "no. X" qualifies the given title of a work within a collection or a movement or set piece in a large work; e.g., "Ertrage nur das Joch der Mängel" (no. 35).
  • Use "duo" for a performing group, and "duet" for a composition for two performers (MW11).
  • Song titles
    • When part of a larger work and discussed in that context, use quotation marks around the title of the song (the title of the song cycle is always in italic):
      The author contrasts the use of the piano in Schubert's songs "Gute Nacht" and "Der Leiermann" from Die Winterreise.
    • When referring to a song from a song cycle in an isolated context, however, use italics:
      She performed several songs by Schubert, including Der Leiermann, Ellen's erster Gesang, and Stimme der Liebe. Among the French songs on the recital were Gounod's Au printemps, Massenet's Que l'heure est donc brève, and Saint-Saëns's La cloche.
    • When referring to a group of songs, some from cycles (which are noted) and some not, use a consistent format for ALL of the song titles. 
        This study focuses on five Schubert songs: "Gute Nacht" and "Der Leiermann" (from Die Winterreise), "Ellen's erster Gesang," "Bei dir!," and "Stimme der Liebe."