AS - MUSIC1 - OCR - Compairing Musicals - Westside Story - One Hand One Heart (Duet)

The following cards hold information about the key features of different songs out of the musical 'Westside Story' in order to be able to compare them for an OCR - Music AS Level - Essay Question that may ask to compare musicals. In this collection consists

One Hand One Heart


One Hand One Heart - Melody/Motifs

  • Dialogue from the previous section has taken place before the start of the song. The meldoy line throughout is echoed in the song when they sing. Introdution includes a melody line with wide leaps over a syncopated accompaniment figure. Contrasting with the rather static base line.
  • Contains melodies we have heard previously - helps to link the song with the action and the future events. E.g. Intro contains the melody from "There's a place for us".
  • Melody in the opening often create dissonance - reflects troubled times. (TRITONE)
  • Tony's melody rhythmically simple, and the melody develops using the same pattern. Rising intervals at the end of each set of 3 crotchets.
  • Regular four bar phrases contrast with the less confident introduction.
  • Only Death Bbb - is melodically surprising
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One Hand One Heart - Harmony/Tonality

  • During the "I Maria take tee Anton" part (introduction - saying their vows) we move to C major
  • Shifts intonality in the run up to "Make of our hands". This opens in Gab Maj.
  • The sung words are set to a more diatonically stable hamony under of Bbb, Db, Fb and Cb, chord of Bbb major with min 9th.
  • After the instrumental midway through the song, the music returns in Ab major. This shift up a tone is to intensify the feeling of the music.
  • Singing in octaves to denote togetherness.
  • Use of triton at the end - "All is not well"
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One Hand One Heart - Structure

  • Long introduction, followed by balanced 4 bar phrase. Harmony changes after every bar.
  • Verses exist, but no chorus here. 2nd verse extended to 20 bars instead of 16 as heard in verse 1
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One Hand One Heart - Rhythms

  • 3/4 metre, slowish tempo.
  • Rhythmic pattens repeat throughout
  • Slight waltz like feel to the piece.
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One Hand One Heart - Instruments/Texture

  • Thin texture at the start, instruments play solo lines throughout. The flute is beginning to represent their yearing for a future together.
  • Strings given a textural role and often hold dotted minims.
  • Countermelody in strings beings prominence to them underneath the repeat of the previous melody in the vocals.
  • Unity of Maria and Tony shown by Maria singing the same melody. Duet also helps to show this sense of togetherness (i.e. singing in octaves)
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One Hand One Heart - Word Setting

  • Upwards motion of the melody showing hope. The whole piece is designed to show unity and a shared dream. Singing in octaves, singing diatonically  in a duet all helps this.
  • Operatic techniques such as rising up into high tessitura and aslo echoing each other.
  • Maria sings the same melody as Tony in her response to his melody.
  • Only Death - word painting within the music. Bbb brings prominence to this.
  • Tremolando strings help to create a sense of excitement as Tony and Maria face the future together. The tritone at the end puts a negative undertone into the music.
  • After the climax we hear "One hand, one heart" - larger leaps and p marking on the one heart suggests tenderness and love.
  • Long held notes at the end and sung in pianissimo.
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Mercury Sweet


Nice one! Like the way you've linked other ones!



Wish I found this at the start of the year rather than 3 days before my exam. So much better than whatever my teacher thought was called teaching. Let's face it, you don't have to know a thing about music for the A2 essay section - it's just a memory test.

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