Music Notation

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by James McFadyen, Feb 5, 2004.

  1. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    As any advanced composer in here will testify to, Musical Notation is a joy to invent!

    Fora few Avant Garde pieces I have planned, I am designing my own notation symbols within Corel Draw to import them into Sibelius onto staves!!

    Just wondered if any other tMP composers have invented any notation yet, if not do u intend to in the future?
  2. Okiedokie of Oz

    Okiedokie of Oz Active Member

    Back at uni, we had to design one to teach music to kids....

    my group based ours on a space ship.....
    as it flew it would pass stars (play wind chimes)
    planets (the bigger the planet, the bigger the drum)

    and so forth.
  3. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    Sounds like fun!
  4. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    No I wouldn't....

    Because I wouldn't...

  5. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    i have, when writing for percussion.

    when i want a particular effect that occurs more than once, rather than explaining it each time i just put a 'key' with strange note symbols.

    People soon just recognise them.
  6. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    i write 'sim.'

  7. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    lol Naomi!!!! :)

    Although I am surprised, surely at Salford, they encourage you and teach you about music notations in the 20th (and I guess the 21st Century)

    Many of the great 20th Century piece's had made-up notation; Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima is one such piece.

    I do think, however, that purely Brass Band composers will not use this technique - but I do think it is important for composers to keep re-inventing what notation is.

    Perhaps, when u do ur masters, Naomi, u might be tempted to branch out a bit and have fun - or lots of pain as I've been having just now with it! :wink:
  8. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    I wouldnt say its that important for composers to keep inventing different notation.

    its not that important for linguists to keep inventing new words.

    Its the way you use them that counts.
  9. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    Fair enough to write sim, but when it happens 300 or so bars later are they really going to remember what you wanted in the first place?
    i guess some times thats the best way, but maybe not always.
    Each to his own though...
  10. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    No we don't make up our own notation... or are or have been taught or encouraged to use it in Salford... which is ashame really but hey...

    Not sure whether I'm going to do a Masters in composition yet... may do conducting... have to see nearer the time ;-)

    As for wanting to do my own notation...
    I'm not really wanting to just now... think some people have problems in understanding the more 'traditional' notation... don't want to confuse people further... especially us percussionists! :lol:
  11. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    We are easily confused i must admit... :wink:
  12. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    bit boring if it happens more than 300 bars...
    However, most composers/arrangers will re-write that 'sim' bar every 8 or 16 bars though... if they aren't that lazy :p
  13. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    This is a truly advanced composition thing. Most won't have even thought about it, or some just too early in their experience and/or training to know why it is done.

    The answer is simple: Some things a composer wants just can't be explained quickly and simply enought through standard notation. This is mainly when a composer calls for an effect, etc. Alectoric music would maybe call for an invented notation.

    Anybody not heard Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima should and will understand the concept of new notations, the score is very very difficult to read, trust me!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

    I don't think any composer should turn his or her back at anything which get across the composers intensions, especially when this means broading horizons, which we all know is a big help in cureing writiers block for some composers.

    Don't turn ur back on something because u think it's radical, coz it simply isnt, it's been around for a while.

    I admit, this is not quite a Brass Band technqiue, but it is a compositional technqiue, and god knows we them more than anything!

    By the way this is not a debate, if you think inventing notation is stupid, then ur wrong, cuz it's common practice for many, many pro composers - maybe not in the BB industry.

    However, feel free to not invent notation, it is the composers choice afterall, regardless of what a player thinks. :wink:
  14. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

  15. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    No no no thats not what i said at all.

    300 bars later means it happens once, then happens once again later on in the piece.

    By which time the player will have forgotten.

    James. As i said, i have used my own created notation- which serves a purpose when necessary.
    When i write for a brass band i dare say i would not use said 'created' notations as people would be incredibly confused as well as completely unaware of how to play tunes on cymbals!

    i wouldnt say its an advanced composition thing- if you are creative enough to see past the boundaries of traditional notation i would have thought it would be fairly logical to make up stuff.

    I do know what you mean though, and yes, Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima is a great piece.
  16. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    If you want something radical- my teachers just composed a work for percussion and vocal solo to be beformed in a massive tin-foil box.

    It sounds mighty interesting!
  17. shedophone

    shedophone Member

    performed* excuse typo.
  18. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member

    A glossary of the invented notations should obviously be supplied to the players :wink:

    But ur right, ppl might get a bit confused.

    Watch out tullis!! :wink: :wink: Dave Neil, our conductor is gonna have one hell of a job as well or maybe not!! :wink: :wink:
  19. Naomi McFadyen

    Naomi McFadyen New Member

    Naturally! ;-)
  20. James McFadyen

    James McFadyen New Member


    I've been using Corel Draw to design my notations, it's kinda going well!