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Thread: Question on staccato marking

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    Timothy Tim Logan's Avatar
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    Default Question on staccato marking

    I am looking at some music in 2/4 time to be played larghetto or about 88 bpm. The majority of the measures are meant to be played with tremolo, I believe. However, some measures consist of four 1/8 notes with a staccato mark and a down stroke mark above each note. Would that be a clear indication that those notes are definitely NOT to be played using with tremolo? Obviously I am not a highly trained musician so please forgive the ignorance this question might portray. Thank you in advance for any replies.

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    Registered User Louise NM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    That would signify four distinct, well-separated notes. No tremolo. (There isn't a slur over them, is there? That could change things.)

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    Timothy Tim Logan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    Quote Originally Posted by Louise NM View Post
    That would signify four distinct, well-separated notes. No tremolo. (There isn't a slur over them, is there? That could change things.)
    Louise, thank you very much! There is no slur and you have sorted out my confusion. Your help is most appreciated! Now you have me intrigued though - if there WAS a slur with the staccato mark, what would that mean? Aren't they contradictory markings??? Again, thank you.

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    Registered User Louise NM's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    You would be most likely to see the slur with staccato over notes of the same pitch. The marking implies the notes are connected, but have a slight emphasis at the beginning of each to mark the rhythm. (Easier to do with a bow than a pick.)

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    Timothy Tim Logan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    Thank you again Louise. That is most helpful!

    “There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.” ― Albert Schweitzer

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    A lot depends on the type or era of the music. Maybe share with us what exactly you are playing. There are even times when tremolo is not warranted for instance in baroque music. There are also in some genres might be short tremolo with a rest between. I believe I have seen that notated with a dot above the note but tremolo indicated on the stem. Obviously not what you are talking about.
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    Timothy Tim Logan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Garber View Post
    A lot depends on the type or era of the music. Maybe share with us what exactly you are playing. There are even times when tremolo is not warranted for instance in baroque music. There are also in some genres might be short tremolo with a rest between. I believe I have seen that notated with a dot above the note but tremolo indicated on the stem. Obviously not what you are talking about.
    Calace etude (136, opus 39) from Florian's A Year With Calace. Florian is quite a busy, generous person and I did not want to bother him with this question. From everything I can tell Louise's response would fit the etude well and seems to fit, as well, after perusing Calace's text in his method books (Marshall/Lichtenberg).
    Last edited by Tim Logan; Aug-25-2020 at 5:11pm.

    “There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.” ― Albert Schweitzer

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    Mando-Accumulator Jim Garber's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Logan View Post
    However, some measures consist of four 1/8 notes with a staccato mark and a down stroke mark above each note. Would that be a clear indication that those notes are definitely NOT to be played using with tremolo?
    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Logan View Post
    Calace etude (136, opus 39) from Florian's A Year With Calace.
    I don't see any staccato eighth notes with down strokes. I do see some accent marks—are you mistaking those for downstrokes? They look like this: >. But I don't see the applied to any staccato notes in either original Calace book or Lichtenburg/Marshall edition. Attached is the original #139 from FMI.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 136Calace-op39.pdf  
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    Timothy Tim Logan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    Jim - the markings are on Florian's version - I'd say best for me is to check with him when his time permits.

    “There are two means of refuge from the miseries of life: music and cats.” ― Albert Schweitzer

    1925 Lyon & Healy Model A, #1674
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    Default Re: Question on staccato marking

    In what Jim uploaded, I see staccato marks on the eighth notes at the beginning of the second to last line. In the measures just before there is a phrasing mark that means tremolo. So at the staccato measures the tremolo would stop. I don’t see the downstroke markings with the staccatos but seems like a reasonable way to play those notes.
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