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victoria Williams Music Theory

Victoria Williams

LmusTCL BA Mus (Hons) MISM

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5. Time Names of Rests

Grade One Music Theory - Lesson 5: Time Names of the Rests (UK Version)

Suitable for:  ABRSM Grade 1   Trinity Grade 1   GCSE   AP Music Theory Beginners 


Rest Shapes

In music theory, rests are symbols which tell you to stop playing, and how long to stop for. Rests come in different shapes depending on how long they last for, just like notes do. Rests take the same names as the notes of the same length. 


Crotchet rests

Crotchet rest.

Crotchet rest in music theory

The crotchet rest is a kind of squiggle which isn’t easy to draw nicely. If you find it difficult, you might prefer to use another version, which looks like this.

Alternative crotchet rest in music theory


Quaver rests

Quaver rest.

Quaver rest in music theory

The quaver rest looks a bit like a number 7, with a circle at its tip. If you look again at the “easy” crotchet rest, you’ll notice that it is, in fact, a back-to-front quaver rest.


Semiquaver rests

Semiquaver rest.

Semiquaver rest in music theory

The semiquaver rest looks a lot like the quaver rest, but it’s got 2 tails, just like the semiquaver note note has.


Minim rests

Minim rest.

Minim rest in music theory

The minim rest is a small, coloured-in block. The minim rest sits on the middle line of the staff.


Semibreve Rests

Semibreve rest.

Semibreve rest in music theory