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Topic: Divisi and Unison markings

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  1. #1

    Divisi and Unison markings

    As I plod away at my competition piece, I have employed divisi string passages for violins, violas and celli. NOTION does have the ability to dictate the stem direction but I'm not sure if I put both directions whether the part extraction will assume a single stem would be unison. I normally notate these things like this:

    div and a.2 for divisi and unison indications.

    Also, while I'm at it, I was wondering whether havig general playing indications like "staccato" will be incorporated in future updates. Reason being is that I like using the staccatisimo articulation but putting those dots on all those sixteenth notes gets to be really really tiresome. Not even mentioning that most orchestras don't necessarily like articulations above every note head. General instructions for string players seems to go over better. It would be nice to indicate "legato" or "staccato" at the beginning of the passage or section rather than insert every single playing articulation one at a time. I'll have a look at a couple of my masters scores but I'm pretty sure most orchestras prefer those indications to the note-by-note. Also, my experience has shown that, aside from student groups, string players DO NOT like bowing directions (up-bow and down-bow)...

  2. #2

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    You can use the text box to do it for printed pieces. Otherwise, you can use the Add Special feature to add articulations to entire passages.

    As far as the Div/Unison question is concerned, you're talking a little (read: a lot) over my head for classical notation. Form a concise, thorough question, and I can ask around. Right now, I'm not sure I understand your question right now.

  3. #3

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by davecos
    Not even mentioning that most orchestras don't necessarily like articulations above every note head.
    I do not think so generally.

    It would be nice to indicate "legato" or "staccato" at the beginning of the passage
    If I would read "legato" at the beginning of a passage I would think: "Ouch ... either he did not know what he wanted or he could not decide on the exact phrasing."

    Also, my experience has shown that, aside from student groups, string players DO NOT like bowing directions (up-bow and down-bow)...
    This is not because bowing direcions are useless but because they are much better done by the concert master than by anybody that is not a professional string player.

    Nevertheless bowings can indicate the special interest of a composer sometimes, e. g. downbows in a row for heavy accents. Then only indicate it once at the beginning of a series, the concert master will do the rest.

    Speaking of legato: mark the phrasing you want with big "musical" legato slurs. The concert master will add the "technical" slurs (insert bow changes that are necessary but will not be heard).

    Hannes
    All your strings belong to me!
    www.strings-on-demand.com

  4. #4

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Windsor
    You can use the text box to do it for printed pieces. Otherwise, you can use the Add Special feature to add articulations to entire passages.

    As far as the Div/Unison question is concerned, you're talking a little (read: a lot) over my head for classical notation. Form a concise, thorough question, and I can ask around. Right now, I'm not sure I understand your question right now.
    Nice! I didn't know that. Must try that out. As far as legatos are concerned, I don't mind using the slur tool although it seems to be particular depending on the stem direction.

    As for articulation markings, what I meant is that I'm used to sub-dividing the string section (at times) for a thicker sound. For example, you normally have 1 line for Vln I, one line for Vln II. Sometimes I divide the 1st violins so thay play 2 notes. To ensure the players don't think they have to use multiple stops (i.e. playing more than one note on the same stringed instrument) the composer normally indicates this by "divisi" which means that the 1st violins will divide up the chord- each chair will split the chord. So if I have a C and E, one of the players plays the C whilst the other plays the E. Rather than all of the 1st violins playing both C and E. I don't know if this makes it clearer. Perhaps someone else could better articulate this...sorry

  5. #5

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Windsor
    You can use the text box to do it for printed pieces. Otherwise, you can use the Add Special feature to add articulations to entire passages.

    As far as the Div/Unison question is concerned, you're talking a little (read: a lot) over my head for classical notation. Form a concise, thorough question, and I can ask around. Right now, I'm not sure I understand your question right now.
    Nice! I didn't know that. Must try that out. As far as legatos are concerned, I don't mind using the slur tool although it seems to be particular depending on the stem direction.

    As for articulation markings, what I meant is that I'm used to sub-dividing the string section (at times) for a thicker sound. For example, you normally have 1 line for Vln I, one line for Vln II. Sometimes I divide the 1st violins so thay play 2 notes. To ensure the players don't think they have to use multiple stops (i.e. playing more than one note on the same stringed instrument) the composer normally indicates this by "divisi" which means that the 1st violins will divide up the chord- each chair will split the chord. So if I have a C and E, one of the players plays the C whilst the other plays the E. Rather than all of the 1st violins playing both C and E. I don't know if this makes it clearer. Perhaps someone else could better articulate this...sorry

  6. #6

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by davecos
    Nice! I didn't know that. Must try that out. As far as legatos are concerned, I don't mind using the slur tool although it seems to be particular depending on the stem direction.

    As for articulation markings, what I meant is that I'm used to sub-dividing the string section (at times) for a thicker sound. For example, you normally have 1 line for Vln I, one line for Vln II. Sometimes I divide the 1st violins so thay play 2 notes. To ensure the players don't think they have to use multiple stops (i.e. playing more than one note on the same stringed instrument) the composer normally indicates this by "divisi" which means that the 1st violins will divide up the chord- each chair will split the chord. So if I have a C and E, one of the players plays the C whilst the other plays the E. Rather than all of the 1st violins playing both C and E. I don't know if this makes it clearer. Perhaps someone else could better articulate this...sorry
    That is clearer, thanks. Are you interested in the ability to mark that, or the ability for NOTION to play it back? The only playback issue would be simply lowering the volume of each sample so it wouldn't sound like double stops, but rather each note being played by half as many violins. Am I understanding you?

  7. #7

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    I'm not as concerned with the playback as much as the ability to notate it for performers.

    Oh, BTW, LOVE the Add Special feature. That saves A LOT of time!

  8. #8

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by davecos
    I'm not as concerned with the playback as much as the ability to notate it for performers.
    How is it notated? Simply text?

  9. #9

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Windsor
    How is it notated? Simply text?
    Yes that's all I do to indicate.

  10. #10

    Re: Divisi and Unison markings

    I checked and we do actually have this listed as a feature we're considering.

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