Originally Posted By: Arlene Steffen
In most Western music, phrases fall logically in measure groups of 2, 4, 8 or 16. Four and 8 are the most common. There is often a pattern to the phrasing (2+2+4 or 4+4+8). Just because notes are staccato doesn't mean they aren't thought of as a phrase. You can often listen for the harmony (or the implied harmony) to tell where the phrase ends.


I think I kind of understand what you said. A slur alone doesn't mean it is a phrase. A phrase could have two or more slurs. So now I know I should look at groups of measures. Like the "Russian Sailor Dance" in lesson book, it sounds like every two measures is a phrase and each phrase has similar melody (not sure if I use the correct term or not, 1 measure of slur and 1 measure of staccato).