DON'T DELETE - experimenting with layout, code, stuff, and dirt.



I can't change the link colour because of wiki markup. It would also be nice (but need access to an external CSS file for that) so that the whole box is highlighted when hovered by mouse, to a lighter colour.



By Davydov:

For the background to this project, see this forum message

Comments and criticisms are also welcome on this Discussion page.

Project Proposal

At the moment there are five main headings ("meta-generes"):

  1. Instrumental (chamber)
  2. Instrumental (other)
  3. Opera
  4. Vocal (non-operatic)
  5. Books

These are further divided into 57 'genres', which can be seen here. Unfortunately these have proved difficult to use, and unsatsifactory for the purpose of identifying works of a particular type.

The proposal is that this system should be replaced by two new independent cataloging systems:

  • Categories — based broadly on the instrumentation of each work
  • Work Types — describing more precisely the nature of the work

These proposed new categories are set out below, with accompanying notes.

Category Description
Stage All music intended to accompany a stage performance, including operas, ballets, musicals, and incidental music for theatrical or amateur dramatic productions. This does not include film scores or television/video soundtracks, which should be classified in one of the categories below.
Choral Works involving multiple voices singing the same part, with or without accompaniment.
Vocal Works for one or more singers, where each performs a unique solo part.
Concertante Works for solo instruments accompanied by an ensemble of at least 10 performers (smaller ensembles come under "Chamber Works")
Orchestral Works for ensembles of at least 10 performers (ranging from full symphony orchestra to small baroque ensembles).
Chamber Works for fewer than 10 performers (excluding those for solo keyboard instruments).
Keyboard Works for piano, organ, harpsichord, etc.
Electronic Works performed by synthesized electronic sounds without human performers.
Writings Books and essays about music.

Work Types

There will be a large number of work types, examples of which include:

  • Operas
  • Operettas
  • Musicals
  • Ballets
  • Film Scores
  • Incidental Music
  • Oratorios
  • Requiems
  • Masses
  • Liturgies
  • Motets
  • Cantatas
  • Art Songs
  • Traditional Songs
  • Madrigals
  • Vocalises
  • Lieder
  • Piano Concertos
  • Violin Concertos
  • Horn Cconcertos
  • Double Concertos
  • Triple Concertos
  • Symphonies
  • Overtures
  • Symphonic Poems
  • Suites
  • Marches
  • Piano Trios
  • String Quartets
  • Brass Quintets
  • Wind Octets
  • Cello Sonatas
  • Piano Sonatas
  • Preludes and Fugues
  • Theoretical
  • Teaching Methods
  • Critiques
  • Biographies
  • Undefined (for works which don't come under any of the above)

Important Note: The above headings are only examples, and others may be added by users as required. Apart from certain standard foms (e.g. "String Quartet"), they should not normally refer to the instrumentation of a work (e.g. "Pieces for clarinet and strings"), as this information will be given elsewhere on the work page.

The above suggested list of work types should be taken as a starting point, and it is likely to quickly expand and adapt as more and more works are scrutinized and classified. It will be left to individual users to select an appropriate type for each work, together with careful monitoring of the system, and forum discussions to iron out any teething troubles. So the list will be ultimately determined by the musical knowledge and experience of all IMSLP users.


The proposal is that the existing system of "Meta-Genres" and "Genre" should be abandoned. Instead each work would be placed in one of nine new "Categories" (Stage, Choral, Vocal, Orchestral, Concertante, Chamber, Keyboard, Electronic, Writings). Additional descriptive categories called "Work Types" (e.g. symphonies, cantatas, operettas, ballets) will also now be given to every work, with the option of using "Undefined" where no suitable work type can be determined.