Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

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Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In the following situation is the sharp in gis' a mandatory or a cautionary accidental:

{
  \key a \major
  g'1 ~ 
  \break
  g'2 gis'
}


?

Embarassingly I'm not sure about that right now but have to know.
The original edition I'm copying omits the reminder flat after the line break and the sharp at the gis,
and I've to know how to deal with the situation.


Thanks for opinions or knowledge
Urs


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

David Kastrup
Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:

> In the following situation is the sharp in gis' a mandatory or a
> cautionary accidental:
>
> {
>
>   \key a \major
>
>   g'1 ~
>
>   \break
>
>   g'2 gis'
>
> }
>
>
> ?
>
> Embarassingly I'm not sure about that right now but have to know.

It's more like "you have to decide".  I would recommend against
overinterpreting the words of engraving authorities on that: what they
try to get perfect is how things are supposed to be typeset, not what
they are supposed to be called.

So it comes down to making and explicitly _documenting_ an editorial
decision.

I would call that accidental "mandatory", and yes, that means that its
state depends on whether there is a linebreak or not.  But that's _my_
opinion and my gut feeling.

I don't think that LilyPond can make this distinction, so LilyPond
likely considers it cautionary.

> The original edition I'm copying omits the reminder flat after the
> line break and the sharp at the gis,
> and I've to know how to deal with the situation.

In that case, a sharp would be cautionary.  Leaving it off, however, is
not particularly friendly to musicians.

--
David Kastrup


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Simon Bailey-5
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
hi,

On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 8:42 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:

> In the following situation is the sharp in gis' a mandatory or a cautionary
> accidental:
>
> {
>
>   \key a \major
>
>   g'1 ~
>
>   \break
>
>   g'2 gis'
>
> }
>
>
> ?
>
> Embarassingly I'm not sure about that right now but have to know.
> The original edition I'm copying omits the reminder flat after the line
> break and the sharp at the gis,
> and I've to know how to deal with the situation.

I wouldn't like to claim authoritative knowledge, but music theory i
learnt states that the note tied over keeps the alteration of before.
a new bar (for accidentals) starts _after_ any tied notes. so ignore a
tied note for accidental usage. i'd typeset a cautionary accidental.

however, baroque [and earlier] usage _may_ differ.

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of trombonists, for they are subtle and
quick to anger.

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Christ van Willegen
In reply to this post by David Kastrup
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 9:03 AM, David Kastrup <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> In the following situation is the sharp in gis' a mandatory or a
>> cautionary accidental:
>
>> The original edition I'm copying omits the reminder flat after the
>> line break and the sharp at the gis,
>> and I've to know how to deal with the situation.
>
> In that case, a sharp would be cautionary.  Leaving it off, however, is
> not particularly friendly to musicians.

In theory, it's simple: Tied notes keep their alteration(s), and any
new note in a new measure loses its alteration(s). In practise, my
choir conductor got it wrong, stating that a new note on the second
line from the bottom (or 'g' in a G clef) would be a g# because a tied
g# led into the measure. Even though a few measure earlier there was
an example of almost the same situation, but with a natural sign
before the 2nd note in the measure...

So, indeed, put both the cautionary flat and cautionary natural sign
in in this case, just to make it clear what's to be played (or sung)!

Christ van Willegen
--
09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
Hi David, Christ and Simon,

thanks for your opinion.
Obviously it boils down to the statement that leaving the reminder sharp for the gis' is impractical/impolite but not wrong.
See the actual situation in the attached image. The gis' is on the third beat in the lower voice of the right hand.
It is clear to me that there _has_ to be a sharp, the question is only if it will be a cautionary or a mandatory accidental.
And resulting from your opinions I will make it a cautionary one.

Best
Urs

Am 22.10.2013 08:42, schrieb Urs Liska:
In the following situation is the sharp in gis' a mandatory or a cautionary accidental:

{
  \key a \major
  g'1 ~ 
  \break
  g'2 gis'
}


?

Embarassingly I'm not sure about that right now but have to know.
The original edition I'm copying omits the reminder flat after the line break and the sharp at the gis,
and I've to know how to deal with the situation.


Thanks for opinions or knowledge
Urs



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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Simon Bailey-5
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:12 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
> thanks for your opinion.
> Obviously it boils down to the statement that leaving the reminder sharp for
> the gis' is impractical/impolite but not wrong.

i think david actually made the statement exactly the other way
around. omitting the reminder sharp may confuse a musician, especially
with a forced natural at the beginning of the bar.

> See the actual situation in the attached image. The gis' is on the third
> beat in the lower voice of the right hand.
> It is clear to me that there _has_ to be a sharp, the question is only if it
> will be a cautionary or a mandatory accidental.
> And resulting from your opinions I will make it a cautionary one.

this is a case where i'd normally play a gis, then realise there's a
natural at the beginning of the measure, then become confused and then
try to work out what's correct from situational analysis. that's not
conducive to sight-reading (not that i could even think of playing
this on a piano, i'm a monophonic trombone guy). when i'm typesetting,
i follow the sight-reading rule: if it _could_ be confusing, then add
cautionary accidentals (in parentheses). i've sat in a rehearsal where
the polite cautionary (non-parenthetical) accidentals really confused
the guy sat next to me -- he started playing fisis in a d major
passage, because the fis had a mandatory accidental. when the error of
his ways was pointed out to him, he ranted about the engraver and
crossed out all forced accidentals in his part... (which gave us more
problems further down the line, but that's a different story).

i always try to get parts which are as least confusing as possible.
when re-engraving, this may mean moving away from how it was
originally engraved, making the typesetting work somewhat more
editorial (why else would we be re-engraving though?). the best reward
is when musicians can play on-sight, without any questions occurring.
be nice to your musicians with the music, and they'll be nice to your
music. :)

regards,
sb

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of trombonists, for they are subtle and
quick to anger.

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Christ van Willegen
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:33 AM, Simon Bailey <[hidden email]> wrote:
> when the error of
> his ways was pointed out to him, he ranted about the engraver and
> crossed out all forced accidentals in his part... (which gave us more
> problems further down the line, but that's a different story).

I once met a guitar player who had absolutely no idea what 'those
strange marks in front of all those notes were' and consequently
'never played them'...

Christ van Willegen
--
09 F9 11 02 9D 74 E3 5B D8 41 56 C5 63 56 88 C0

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In reply to this post by Simon Bailey-5
Am 22.10.2013 10:33, schrieb Simon Bailey:
> On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:12 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> thanks for your opinion.
>> Obviously it boils down to the statement that leaving the reminder sharp for
>> the gis' is impractical/impolite but not wrong.
> i think david actually made the statement exactly the other way
> around. omitting the reminder sharp may confuse a musician, especially
> with a forced natural at the beginning of the bar.

Rereading David's post I realize I haven't completely understood him yet.
First he says it's mandatory then cautionary, responding to different
parts of my message.
So obviously I'm still not really clear about it.

>
>> See the actual situation in the attached image. The gis' is on the third
>> beat in the lower voice of the right hand.
>> It is clear to me that there _has_ to be a sharp, the question is only if it
>> will be a cautionary or a mandatory accidental.
>> And resulting from your opinions I will make it a cautionary one.
> this is a case where i'd normally play a gis, then realise there's a
> natural at the beginning of the measure, then become confused and then
> try to work out what's correct from situational analysis.

Exactly, and there's also the natural in the vocal line, which makes it
even more confusing.

> that's not
> conducive to sight-reading (not that i could even think of playing
> this on a piano, i'm a monophonic trombone guy). when i'm typesetting,
> i follow the sight-reading rule: if it _could_ be confusing, then add
> cautionary accidentals (in parentheses). i've sat in a rehearsal where
> the polite cautionary (non-parenthetical) accidentals really confused
> the guy sat next to me -- he started playing fisis in a d major
> passage, because the fis had a mandatory accidental. when the error of
> his ways was pointed out to him, he ranted about the engraver and
> crossed out all forced accidentals in his part... (which gave us more
> problems further down the line, but that's a different story).
>
> i always try to get parts which are as least confusing as possible.
> when re-engraving, this may mean moving away from how it was
> originally engraved, making the typesetting work somewhat more
> editorial (why else would we be re-engraving though?).

Actually I _do_ have the editor's hat and not the engraver's on in this
situation.
As a performer I know that I want a sharp in that place.
But as an editor I have to decide whether I am adding a cautionary
accidental or whether I am 'correcting an error' of the original edition ;-)

BTW we decided to use cautionary accidentals _without_ parentheses in
this edition, because
a) the original edition did so too
b) we are heavily modifying the OE's decision in this respect which would
c) result in a score completely flooded with parentheses, which wouldn't
help _anyone_.
When we add missing mandatory accidentals they are parenthesized, however.
We know this differs from general practice, but anything else would be
soo ugly - and of course we have documented it sufficiently.

Best
Urs

> the best reward
> is when musicians can play on-sight, without any questions occurring.
> be nice to your musicians with the music, and they'll be nice to your
> music. :)
>
> regards,
> sb
>


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In reply to this post by Christ van Willegen
Am 22.10.2013 10:41, schrieb Christ van Willegen:

> On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:33 AM, Simon Bailey <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> when the error of
>> his ways was pointed out to him, he ranted about the engraver and
>> crossed out all forced accidentals in his part... (which gave us more
>> problems further down the line, but that's a different story).
> I once met a guitar player who had absolutely no idea what 'those
> strange marks in front of all those notes were' and consequently
> 'never played them'...
>
> Christ van Willegen

There is this joke about the orchestral musicians union which threatened
to ask their members to "perform without accidentals and vibrato".

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Simon Bailey-5
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:42 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
> Rereading David's post I realize I haven't completely understood him yet.
> First he says it's mandatory then cautionary, responding to different parts
> of my message.
> So obviously I'm still not really clear about it.

i think i boils down to, "put the sharp in if you want to and don't
bother what you're calling it."


>> this is a case where i'd normally play a gis, then realise there's a
>> natural at the beginning of the measure, then become confused and then
>> try to work out what's correct from situational analysis.
>
>
> Exactly, and there's also the natural in the vocal line, which makes it even
> more confusing.

i assumed that came from a tie beforehand (which doesn't make sense
given the lyrics). :) like i said, monophonic guy... :D

>> i always try to get parts which are as least confusing as possible.
>> when re-engraving, this may mean moving away from how it was
>> originally engraved, making the typesetting work somewhat more
>> editorial (why else would we be re-engraving though?).
>
>
> Actually I _do_ have the editor's hat and not the engraver's on in this
> situation.
> As a performer I know that I want a sharp in that place.
> But as an editor I have to decide whether I am adding a cautionary
> accidental or whether I am 'correcting an error' of the original edition ;-)

it's your call then. but call it, "clarifying an inconclusive
situation" of the original edition. ;) the music in the original is
almost certainly formally correct, just unclearly notated.

> BTW we decided to use cautionary accidentals _without_ parentheses in this
> edition, because
> a) the original edition did so too
> b) we are heavily modifying the OE's decision in this respect which would
> c) result in a score completely flooded with parentheses, which wouldn't
> help _anyone_.
> When we add missing mandatory accidentals they are parenthesized, however.
> We know this differs from general practice, but anything else would be soo
> ugly - and of course we have documented it sufficiently.

ah, ok. the snippet you posted above _does_ look really good. is the
slur from d, (LH beat 1) to g' (RH beat 3) original lilypond or
tweaked?

regards,
sb
--
Do not meddle in the affairs of trombonists, for they are subtle and
quick to anger.

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

David Kastrup
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:

> Am 22.10.2013 10:33, schrieb Simon Bailey:
>> On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:12 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>> thanks for your opinion.
>>> Obviously it boils down to the statement that leaving the reminder sharp for
>>> the gis' is impractical/impolite but not wrong.
>> i think david actually made the statement exactly the other way
>> around. omitting the reminder sharp may confuse a musician, especially
>> with a forced natural at the beginning of the bar.
>
> Rereading David's post I realize I haven't completely understood him yet.
> First he says it's mandatory then cautionary, responding to different
> parts of my message.
> So obviously I'm still not really clear about it.

Sigh.  You first put an example where after a linebreak an accidental is
repeat on a tied note.  I comment on that.

Then you explain that in the original score you are working from, there
is no such accidental.  I now make a different statement starting with
"In that case, ..."

Now you are confused that I made two different statements.

I have a real problem understanding the source of your confusion.

If you change the rules according to which accidentals are typeset in
relation to your original score, _obviously_ the situation as a
consequence of your changed rules is a different one.  That was the
whole point of changing the rules.

Again: you are making an editorial decision here.  There are several
valid decisions you can make.  The important thing is _documenting_ your
decision so that
a) the reader knows which pitch to play
b) the reader knows what was originally written
The latter point is only relevant when doing a critical edition, and
particularly relevant when doing an Urtext.

--
David Kastrup


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In reply to this post by Simon Bailey-5
Am 22.10.2013 11:09, schrieb Simon Bailey:

> On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:42 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> Rereading David's post I realize I haven't completely understood him yet.
>> First he says it's mandatory then cautionary, responding to different parts
>> of my message.
>> So obviously I'm still not really clear about it.
> i think i boils down to, "put the sharp in if you want to and don't
> bother what you're calling it."
>
>
>>> this is a case where i'd normally play a gis, then realise there's a
>>> natural at the beginning of the measure, then become confused and then
>>> try to work out what's correct from situational analysis.
>>
>> Exactly, and there's also the natural in the vocal line, which makes it even
>> more confusing.
> i assumed that came from a tie beforehand (which doesn't make sense
> given the lyrics). :) like i said, monophonic guy... :D
>
>>> i always try to get parts which are as least confusing as possible.
>>> when re-engraving, this may mean moving away from how it was
>>> originally engraved, making the typesetting work somewhat more
>>> editorial (why else would we be re-engraving though?).
>>
>> Actually I _do_ have the editor's hat and not the engraver's on in this
>> situation.
>> As a performer I know that I want a sharp in that place.
>> But as an editor I have to decide whether I am adding a cautionary
>> accidental or whether I am 'correcting an error' of the original edition ;-)
> it's your call then. but call it, "clarifying an inconclusive
> situation" of the original edition. ;) the music in the original is
> almost certainly formally correct, just unclearly notated.
>
>> BTW we decided to use cautionary accidentals _without_ parentheses in this
>> edition, because
>> a) the original edition did so too
>> b) we are heavily modifying the OE's decision in this respect which would
>> c) result in a score completely flooded with parentheses, which wouldn't
>> help _anyone_.
>> When we add missing mandatory accidentals they are parenthesized, however.
>> We know this differs from general practice, but anything else would be soo
>> ugly - and of course we have documented it sufficiently.
> ah, ok. the snippet you posted above _does_ look really good. is the
> slur from d, (LH beat 1) to g'

gis' ! Haha :-)

> (RH beat 3) original lilypond or
> tweaked?

According to 'git blame' Janek applied a \shape to that slur on 2013-01-02.

Urs
>
> regards,
> sb


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
In reply to this post by David Kastrup
Am 22.10.2013 11:10, schrieb David Kastrup:

> Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> Am 22.10.2013 10:33, schrieb Simon Bailey:
>>> On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 10:12 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>>> thanks for your opinion.
>>>> Obviously it boils down to the statement that leaving the reminder sharp for
>>>> the gis' is impractical/impolite but not wrong.
>>> i think david actually made the statement exactly the other way
>>> around. omitting the reminder sharp may confuse a musician, especially
>>> with a forced natural at the beginning of the bar.
>> Rereading David's post I realize I haven't completely understood him yet.
>> First he says it's mandatory then cautionary, responding to different
>> parts of my message.
>> So obviously I'm still not really clear about it.
> Sigh.  You first put an example where after a linebreak an accidental is
> repeat on a tied note.  I comment on that.
>
> Then you explain that in the original score you are working from, there
> is no such accidental.  I now make a different statement starting with
> "In that case, ..."
>
> Now you are confused that I made two different statements.
>
> I have a real problem understanding the source of your confusion.

The source of the confusion may even be slightly irrelevant because I
think the confusion was already there before reading your comment.

>
> If you change the rules according to which accidentals are typeset in
> relation to your original score, _obviously_ the situation as a
> consequence of your changed rules is a different one.  That was the
> whole point of changing the rules.

So the situation is like this:
a) the tied g' doesn't have a natural:
   the g' is correct and the following gis' does not _need_ a sharp
because 'the bar starts after the tied note'
  (this is the situation in the original edition, so this is formally
correct)
b) when I add a cautionary natural on the tied g' (in the new edition) I
need to also print the sharp for the gis'

>
> Again: you are making an editorial decision here.  There are several
> valid decisions you can make.  The important thing is _documenting_ your
> decision so that
> a) the reader knows which pitch to play
> b) the reader knows what was originally written
> The latter point is only relevant when doing a critical edition, and
> particularly relevant when doing an Urtext.
Exactly. That's why I'm actually asking this question. From the
readabil- and unambigu-ity point of view I would have managed to do it
alone.

Thanks again
Urs

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Simon Bailey-5
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 11:17 AM, Urs Liska <[hidden email]> wrote:
>> ah, ok. the snippet you posted above _does_ look really good. is the
>> slur from d, (LH beat 1) to g'
>
> gis' ! Haha :-)

aaarrrrggghhh. :D there's your answer -- it needs an accidental. :P

>> (RH beat 3) original lilypond or
>> tweaked?
>
> According to 'git blame' Janek applied a \shape to that slur on 2013-01-02.

it looks good. :) may one ask what the project is?

regards,
sb

--
Do not meddle in the affairs of trombonists, for they are subtle and
quick to anger.

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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
Am 22.10.2013 11:27, schrieb Simon Bailey:
On Tue, Oct 22, 2013 at 11:17 AM, Urs Liska [hidden email] wrote:
ah, ok. the snippet you posted above _does_ look really good. is the
slur from d, (LH beat 1) to g'
gis' ! Haha :-)
aaarrrrggghhh. :D there's your answer -- it needs an accidental. :P

You're perfectly right, that was answering by evidence ;-)


(RH beat 3) original lilypond or
tweaked?
According to 'git blame' Janek applied a \shape to that slur on 2013-01-02.
it looks good. :) may one ask what the project is?

I think Janek is currently preparing a post on Scores of Beauty about it and publish that soon.
But it's a new edition of the songs of Oskar Fried ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oskar_Fried).

Best
Urs


regards,
sb



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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

David Kastrup
In reply to this post by Urs Liska
Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:

> Am 22.10.2013 11:10, schrieb David Kastrup:
>
>> Again: you are making an editorial decision here.  There are several
>> valid decisions you can make.  The important thing is _documenting_ your
>> decision so that
>> a) the reader knows which pitch to play
>> b) the reader knows what was originally written
>> The latter point is only relevant when doing a critical edition, and
>> particularly relevant when doing an Urtext.

> Exactly. That's why I'm actually asking this question. From the
> readabil- and unambigu-ity point of view I would have managed to do it
> alone.

So where is the problem?  If there is no accidental in the original
(neither for the tied note nor for the following one), you put two
accidentals in and use parentheses or small print or whatever else you
use in order to mark them as editorial additions of your edition.  If
your score is _exclusively_ for historical reference rather than for
playing, you leave everything out.  Unless it is important to convey a
canonical _reading_ of the original (since you probably justly consider
your own reading more informed than that of the typical reader) rather
than just a reproduction.

--
David Kastrup


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Re: Mandatory or a cautionary accidental?

Urs Liska
Am 22.10.2013 12:18, schrieb David Kastrup:

> Urs Liska <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> Am 22.10.2013 11:10, schrieb David Kastrup:
>>
>>> Again: you are making an editorial decision here.  There are several
>>> valid decisions you can make.  The important thing is _documenting_ your
>>> decision so that
>>> a) the reader knows which pitch to play
>>> b) the reader knows what was originally written
>>> The latter point is only relevant when doing a critical edition, and
>>> particularly relevant when doing an Urtext.
>> Exactly. That's why I'm actually asking this question. From the
>> readabil- and unambigu-ity point of view I would have managed to do it
>> alone.
> So where is the problem?

Nowhere anymore.
I wasn't sure if the situation in the original edition is wrong or only
impractical.
_Now_ I know it's the latter.

Thanks again

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