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Encyclopedia > Ornament (music)

In music, ornaments are musical flourishes that are not necessary to the overall melodic (or harmonic) line, but serve to decorate or "ornament" that line. Many ornaments are performed as "fast notes" around a central note. The amount of ornamentation in a piece of music can vary from quite extensive (it was often so in the Baroque period) to relatively little or even none. The word agrément is used specifically to indicate the French Baroque style of ornamentation. Music is a form of expression in the medium of time using the structures of tones and silence. ... Baroque music describes an era and a set of styles of European classical music which were in widespread use between approximately 1600 to 1750 (see Dates of classical music eras for a discussion of the problems inherent in defining the beginning and end points). ...


In the baroque period, it was common for performers to improvise ornamentation on a given melodic line. A singer performing a da capo aria, for instance, would sing the melody relatively unornamented the first time, but decorate it with additional flourishes the second time. Improvised ornamentation continues to be part of the Irish musical tradition[1], particularly in sean nós singing but also throughout the wider tradition as performed by the best players. Musical improvisation is singing or playing a musical instrument extemporaneously—in an offhand manner. ... The da capo aria was a musical form prevalent in the Baroque era. ... Sean nós is a highly-ornamented style of solo, unaccompanied singing in the Irish tradition. ...


Ornamentation may also be indicated by the composer. A number of standard ornaments (described below) are indicated with standard symbols in music notation, while other ornamentations may be appended to the staff in small notes, or simply written out normally. A grace note is a note written in smaller type, with or without a slash through it, to indicate that its note value does not count as part of the total time value of the measure. Alternatively, the term may refer more generally to any of the small notes used to mark some other ornament (see Appoggiatura, below), or in association with other some ornament's indication (see Trill, below), regardless of the timing used in the execution. Music notation is a system of writing for music. ... A grace note is a common term for a phenomenon of music notation used to denote several kinds of musical ornaments. ... Parts of a note In music notation, a note value indicates the relative duration of a note, using the color or shape of the note head, the presence or absence of a stem, and the presence or absence of flags. ... In musical notation, a bar or measure is a segment of time defined as a given number of beats of a given duration. ...


In Spain, these ornaments were called "diferenzias", and can be traced back to the early 16th Century, when the first books with music for the guitar were produced. (15th century - 16th century - 17th century - more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 16th century was that century which lasted from 1501 to 1600. ...

Contents


Types of ornament

Trill

A trill is a rapid alternation between an indicated note and the one above, usually indicated by the letter tr written above the staff. The trill is also known as the shake. The trill is a musical ornament consisting of a rapid alternation between two adjacent notes of a scale (compare tremolo). ... In musical notation, the staff or stave is a set of five horizontal lines on which note symbols are placed to indicate pitch and rhythm. ...


Usually, if the music containing the trill was written before 1800 the trill is played by starting a note above the written note. If the music was written after 1800 then the trill is usually played by starting on the note written and going up to the note above. A printed score will often indicate which interpretation is to be used, either in the preface to the score or by using a grace note. 1800 (MDCCC) was an common year starting on Wednesday (see link for calendar). ...


Sometimes it is expected that the trill will end with a turn (by sounding the note below rather than the note above the principal note, immediately before the last sounding of the principal note), or some other variation. Such variations are often marked with a few grace notes following the note that bears the trill indication.


Mordent

The mordent is thought of as a rapid single alternation between an indicated note, the note above (called the upper mordent, inverted mordent, or pralltriller) or below (called the lower mordent or mordent), and the indicated note again. A Mordent is an elongated bar above a letter, used e. ...


The upper mordent is indicated by a short squiggle; the lower mordent is the same with a short vertical line through it:


Image:Upper and lower modent notation.png An upper mordent and a lower mordent (see ornament). ...


As with the trill, the exact speed with which the mordent is performed will vary according to the tempo of the piece, but at moderate tempi the above might be executed as follows:


Image:Upper and lower mordent execution.png One way of playing upper and lower mordents. ...


Listen to a passage firstly played with lower mordents, then played without. (Ogg) For help with sound or video, see Wikipedia:Media help. ...


Confusion over the meaning of the unadorned word mordent has led to the modern terms upper and lower mordent being used, rather than mordent and inverted mordent. Practice, notation, and nomenclature vary widely for all of these ornaments, and this article as a whole addresses an approximate nineteenth-century standard. In the Baroque period, a Mordant (the German equivalent of mordent) was what later came to be called an inverted mordent and what is now often called a lower mordent. In the 19th century, however, the name mordent was generally applied to what is now called the upper mordent. Although mordents are now thought of as just a single alternation between notes, in the Baroque period a Mordant may sometimes have been executed with more than one alternation between the indicated note and the note below, making it a sort of inverted trill. Mordents of all sorts might typically, in some periods, begin with an extra inessential note (the lesser, added note), rather than with the principal note as shown in the examples here. The same applies to trills, which in Baroque and Classical times would standardly begin with the added, upper note. A lower inessential note may or may not be chromatically raised (that is, with a natural, a sharp, or even a double sharp) to make it just one semitone lower than the principal note. Baroque music describes an era and a set of styles of European classical music which were in widespread use between approximately 1600 to 1750 (see Dates of classical music eras for a discussion of the problems inherent in defining the beginning and end points). ... Alternative meaning: Nineteenth Century (periodical) (18th century — 19th century — 20th century — more centuries) As a means of recording the passage of time, the 19th century was that century which lasted from 1801-1900 in the sense of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Turn

A short figure consisting of the note above the one indicated, the note itself, the note below the one indicated, and the note itself again. It is indicated by a mirrored S-shape lying on its side above the staff. An inverted turn (the note below the one indicated, the note itself, the note above it, and the note itself again) is usually indicated by putting a short vertical line through the normal turn sign, though sometimes the sign itself is turned upside down.


If the turn symbol is placed directly above a note, it is performed exactly as outlined above. If it is placed between two notes, however, the note before the symbol is played, then the turn, and then the following note. So the following turns:


Image:Turn notation.png Two examples of turns (see ornament). ...


might be executed like this:


Image:Turn execution.png A possible way of executing the turns at Image:Turn notation. ...


The lower added note may or may not be chromatically raised (see mordent).


The exact speed at which the notes of a turn are played can vary, as can its rhythm. The question of how a turn is best executed is largely one of context, convention and taste.


(Long) Appoggiatura

From the Italian word appoggiare, "to lean upon"; (pronounced approximately [əˌpʰodʒə̆ˈtuˑɾə]). The long appoggiatura is important melodically and often suspend the principal note by taking away the time-value of the appoggiatura prefixed to it (generally half the time value of the note, though in triple time, for example, it might receive two thirds of the time). The added note (the unessential note) is one degree higher or lower than the principal note; and, if lower, it may or may not be chromatically raised (see mordent).


The appoggiatura is written as a grace note prefixed to a principal note and printed in small character, usually without the oblique stroke:


Image:Apoggiatura notaton.png An appoggiatura (see ornament) as notated. ...


This would be executed as follows:


Image:Appogiatura execution.png Possible way of interpreting the appoggiatura at Image:Apoggiatura notaton. ...


Listen to a passage with two phrases ending in appoggiaturas, followed by these two phrases without them. (Ogg)


Appoggiaturas are also usually on the strong or strongest beat of the resolution and are approached by a leap and leave by a step.


Musicians' mnemonic: the appoggiatura is longer than the acciaccatura because it is podgy.


So-called unaccented appoggiaturas are also quite common in many periods of music, even though they are deprecated by some early theorists (for example CPE Bach, in his Versuch über die wahre Art das Clavier zu spielen). While not being identical to the acciaccatura (see below), these are almost always quite short, and take their time from the allocation for the note that precedes them. They are more likely to be seen as full-size notes in the score, rather than in small character – at least in modern editions. Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach (Weimar, March 8, 1714 – December 14, 1788) was a German musician and composer, the second son of Johann Sebastian Bach and Maria Barbara Bach. ...


Acciaccatura

From the Italian word acciaccare, "to crush"; (pronounced approximately [əˌtʃækə̆ˈtuˑɾə]). The acciaccatura (sometimes called short appoggiatura) is perhaps best thought of as a shorter, less melodically significant, variant of the long appoggiatura, where the delay of the principal note is scarcely perceptible - theoretically subtracting no time at all. It is written using a grace note (often a quaver, or eighth note), with an oblique stroke through the stem:


Image:Acciaccatura notation.png The acciaccatura (see ornament) as notated. ...


The exact interpretation of this will vary according to the tempo of the piece, but the following is possible:


Image:Acciaccatura execution.png The acciaccatura (see ornament). ...


Whether the note should be played before or on the beat is largely a question of taste and performance practice. Exceptionally, the acciaccatura may be notated in the bar preceding the note to which it is attached, showing that it is to be played before the beat. (This guide to practice is unfortunately not available, of course, if the principal note does not fall at the beginning of the measure.)


The implication also varies with the composer and the period. For example, Mozart's and Haydn's long appoggiaturas are –to the eye– indistinguishable from Prokofiev's and Moussorgsky's before-the-beat acciaccaturas.


In some practice, the acciaccatura is sounded simultaneously with the principal note, and then immediately released.


References

  1. ^ Ó Canainn, Tomás (1993). Traditional Music in Ireland. Cork, Ireland: Ossian Publications Ltd. ISBN 0-946005-73-7.
  • This article incorporates text from the Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition, a publication now in the public domain.

Encyclopædia Britannica, the 11th edition The Encyclopædia Britannica Eleventh Edition (1910–1911) is perhaps the most famous edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. ... The public domain comprises the body of all creative works and other knowledge—writing, artwork, music, science, inventions, and others—in which no person or organization has any proprietary interest. ...

External links

  • An interesting explanation of different kinds of ornaments
Musical notation edit
Staff : Bar line | Clef | Key signature | Ledger line | Time signature
Notes : Accidental | Dotted note | Note value | Rest | Slur | Tie
Expression marks: Articulation | Dynamics | Octaves | Ornaments | Tempo

  Results from FactBites:
 
Ornament (music) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1473 words)
In music, ornaments are musical flourishes that are not necessary to the overall melodic (or harmonic) line, but serve to decorate or "ornament" that line.
In the baroque period, it was common for performers to improvise ornamentation on a given melodic line.
In Spain, these ornaments were called "diferenzias", and can be traced back to the early 16th Century, when the first books with music for the guitar were produced.
Music and lights Christmas ball ornament - Patent 4652980 (2512 words)
The ornamental device of claim 1, wherein said electric circuit controlling means includes a means to play at least one volume level of a musical selection and to cause the rhythmic flashing of said light source in synchrony with said playing of at least one volume level of said musical selection.
The ornamental device of claim 5, wherein said electric circuit controlling means includes a means to play at least one volume level of a musical selection and to cause the rhythmic flashing of said light source in synchrony with said playing of at least one volume level of said musical selection.
The ornamental device of claim 9, wherein said electric circuit controlling means includes a means to play at least one volume level of a musical selection and to cause the rhythmic flashing of said light source in synchrony with said playing of at least one volume level of said musical selection.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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