accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ??

Posted by: Stephen Hazel

accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 06:21 PM

My apologies. I'm sure there is an answer buried in history, but...


When an accidental is applied to a note, I understand that it applies until end of bar and for a held note, into the tail in a next bar.

I also understand that it MUST be restated in the other staff.

What I don't understand is if it applies to other octaves within the bar within the staff.

I've heard some people say that the accidental only applies within the octave.

Others that say if the same note happens in another octave later in the bar that the accidental is assumed.

Still others that say that if 2 C#s (say) are to be played at the same time then BOTH must have an accidental (and then there is argument about whether it's a courtesy accidental or a REQUIred accidental)


Is there consensus that an accidental applies only to the octave it's stated in? (for the given staff and bar)
Posted by: BruceD

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 09:32 PM

My understanding, borne out by evidence in traditional scores, is that an accidental applies only to the note before which it is placed, but does apply to subsequent notes of the same pitch within the measure. It does not apply to other notes of the same name at different octaves within the measure.

There has been some mention recently that in contemporary scores the rule is somewhat different, but I can't quote it because I don't know what it is.

Regards,
Posted by: Stephen Hazel

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 09:41 PM

Thanks Bruce,

I think I -have- seen scores where an accidental applies across octaves (still within the staff and bar).

But, in general, I THINK the consensus is that the accidental applies for the note within the bar ONLY for that octave (of which the staff is a more general case of octave).
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 09:51 PM

As far as I know, it is exactly as Bruce said, but unfortunately some composers don't know...
Posted by: Kreisler

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 10:16 PM

Bruce is correct. And when there may be a question, a competent editor will add cautionary or parenthetical accidentals to clarify the situation.
Posted by: Stephen Hazel

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 10:23 PM

Thanks yall. That's GOOD enough fer me.

within the octave it is.
(restate on each octave and on each staff, and for 8va changes, etc.)

'preciate it - I know I can always rely on you folks smile
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 11:16 PM

What Bruce says. However, because of most of my music and other music I edit is rather dissonant, and the chances of hitting a chord with both C# and C are quite high, I put a cautionary natural in the natural C. Just in case... Makes things much cleared.

(Heh... of course I did miss at least one such case in a recently printed book, but I think it's clear since it's in a different staff and different hand)...
Posted by: beet31425

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/20/12 11:33 PM

Originally Posted By: Kreisler
And when there may be a question, a competent editor will add cautionary or parenthetical accidentals to clarify the situation.

I think this is the main point. If the edition is decent, we shouldn't have to know the answer to the OP's question. If that situation does comes up, (an accidental on a note, and no disambiguation on an octave note), it's just as likely to be a typo as following any rule.

I was just reading through some Messiaen today and came across a chord with a low G# and a high G without any marking on it. Rather than use the rule, I'm concluding that this is a typo, and I think the high G is actually more likely to be missing a sharp than a cautionary natural.

-J
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/21/12 12:43 AM

Originally Posted By: beet31425
I was just reading through some Messiaen today and came across a chord with a low G# and a high G without any marking on it. Rather than use the rule, I'm concluding that this is a typo, and I think the high G is actually more likely to be missing a sharp than a cautionary natural.

-J
Jason,

You should check around the score and see if there are any repetitions of that passage, or similar chords, or other stuff to make it clear if it's a G# or G... With Messiaen one can't tell the same way they can with a Beethoven work... It could very well be a G natural and a sharp above... :-/
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/21/12 12:51 AM

By the way, this is one of the mistakes made by a composer that irritate me the most when I am sight-reading (and it is clear it is not intentional)...
Posted by: jeffreyjones

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/21/12 12:19 PM

Originally Posted By: BruceD
My understanding, borne out by evidence in traditional scores, is that an accidental applies only to the note before which it is placed, but does apply to subsequent notes of the same pitch within the measure. It does not apply to other notes of the same name at different octaves within the measure.

There has been some mention recently that in contemporary scores the rule is somewhat different, but I can't quote it because I don't know what it is.

Regards,


I have seen some scores, such as Lutoslawski's Piano Concerto, where the accidental only applies to the note it precedes and does not carry to any subsequent notes. This is to reduce the clutter of natural signs.
Posted by: Nikolas

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/21/12 02:03 PM

Originally Posted By: jeffreyjones
Originally Posted By: BruceD
My understanding, borne out by evidence in traditional scores, is that an accidental applies only to the note before which it is placed, but does apply to subsequent notes of the same pitch within the measure. It does not apply to other notes of the same name at different octaves within the measure.

There has been some mention recently that in contemporary scores the rule is somewhat different, but I can't quote it because I don't know what it is.

Regards,


I have seen some scores, such as Lutoslawski's Piano Concerto, where the accidental only applies to the note it precedes and does not carry to any subsequent notes. This is to reduce the clutter of natural signs.
Yes, I've seen that as well (perhaps the same score...), but there's always a very bold sign/ instructions/ something that states that this is the case...

It usually applies to the note the accidental is next to and nothing else UNLESS there's a repeated note (like a repetition of an F# for many times), in which case it applies for the whole group... This is why this system gets a bit complicated... :-/ And never won over many composers.
Posted by: Ferdinand

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 01:10 AM

Returning to the context of standard notation for a moment -- what about a second note in the same measure, same pitch, same octave, but different staff? Does an accidental on the first note apply to the second? I think it does.
Posted by: jeffreyjones

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 01:29 AM

Originally Posted By: Ferdinand
Returning to the context of standard notation for a moment -- what about a second note in the same measure, same pitch, same octave, but different staff? Does an accidental on the first note apply to the second? I think it does.


No, I don't think so. The composer might intentionally put the notes on different staffs in order to highlight that they're played with different hands and that they're different notes.
Posted by: Damon

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 01:50 AM

Originally Posted By: Ferdinand
Returning to the context of standard notation for a moment -- what about a second note in the same measure, same pitch, same octave, but different staff? Does an accidental on the first note apply to the second? I think it does.


I don't think so. Here is an example. In the right hand the 2nd A is natural but in the left hand the composer surely wants an A flat.

Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 01:59 AM

I don't think so either.
Posted by: jeffreyjones

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 02:14 AM

Originally Posted By: Damon
Originally Posted By: Ferdinand
Returning to the context of standard notation for a moment -- what about a second note in the same measure, same pitch, same octave, but different staff? Does an accidental on the first note apply to the second? I think it does.


I don't think so. Here is an example. In the right hand the 2nd A is natural but in the left hand the composer surely wants an A flat.



Au bord d'un source, nice example.
Posted by: Ferdinand

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 03:10 PM

I stand corrected.

I checked the Henle edition of Bach for examples. Partita #4, Ouverture, bar 91 has F natural in highest voice, treble clef, and later in the measure the same pitch in middle voice, bass clef. The second occurrence does have the natural sign. Same thing in the next bar with g sharp marked both times.

However in the Allemande the notation is inconsistent. Bar 9 has A sharp in top voice, treble clef, and another A, same measure, middle voice, bass clef, with no marking. It is clearly meant to be A natural. But -- in the parallel passage in bar 11 with G sharp and G natural, there is a natural sign on the second G. I suppose it's a courtesy accidental, but there are no parentheses.
Posted by: Damon

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 06:05 PM

Originally Posted By: jeffreyjones
Originally Posted By: Damon
Originally Posted By: Ferdinand
Returning to the context of standard notation for a moment -- what about a second note in the same measure, same pitch, same octave, but different staff? Does an accidental on the first note apply to the second? I think it does.


I don't think so. Here is an example. In the right hand the 2nd A is natural but in the left hand the composer surely wants an A flat.



Au bord d'un source, nice example.


Good eye! I've been working on this and it sounds peculiar at slow speeds but fantastic up to tempo so I was doubting what I was reading at times. That made me immediately think of this ornament in regards to accidentals.
Au bord d'un source, nice example.
Posted by: BruceD

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 07:46 PM

Originally Posted By: jeffreyjones
[...]Au bord d'un une source, nice example.
Posted by: Damon

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 08:03 PM

Originally Posted By: BruceD
Originally Posted By: jeffreyjones
[...]Au bord d'un une source, nice example.



It's like those French have a different word for everything!
Posted by: ChopinAddict

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/22/12 08:05 PM

They distinguish between genders. Women get a bit more. smile
Posted by: BruceD

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/23/12 01:03 PM

Originally Posted By: ChopinAddict
They distinguish between genders. Women get a bit more. smile


Whereas the German (language!) has three genders : masculine, feminine and neuter.

Jawohl!
Posted by: kohog

Re: accidental within a bar within a staff within an OCTAVE ?? - 11/24/12 11:24 PM

There are different conventions.