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Re: dynamics and pedal as separate "voices"

From: Kieren MacMillan
Subject: Re: dynamics and pedal as separate "voices"
Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2018 09:24:02 -0400

Hi Robert,

> For my pianoscores I use a "dynamics voice" (\new Dynamics = "dynamics" 
> \dynamics) and a "pedal voice" (\new Dynamics = "pedal" \pedal).

An excellent design choice!

> On the whole they work perfectly but compared to dynamic marks attached to 
> notes I find their possiblities a bit limited. The same goes for the pedal 
> marks.

Really? I’ve never run into any limitations versus "embedding" the pedal 
markings (except of course the obvious extra typing required)…?

> As for the dynamics I would like to use it also for other expressive 
> “instructions” like “p dolce” but I have no idea how to accomplish this in 
> \new Dynamics = "dynamics" \dynamics.

There are many different ways to do this, and many functions (of varying 
complexity and flexibility) to help make the job easier — you can search the 
usual locations (official docs, lists, LSR) for examples, especially Janek’s 
function (which Harm later improved).

> As for the pedal marks I would like to use the “mixed” style and occasionally 
> the “bracket” -style but again I have no idea how I can make “\new Dynamics = 
> "pedal" \pedal” do it.

Same as you would in any context: set the appropriate parameter!  =)

In case it’s helpful: I have a PianoStaff.ily include file, in which I define a 
bunch of custom contexts including one for pedalling:

  \context {
    \name PianoPedals
    \type "Engraver_group"
    \alias Staff
    \consists "Text_engraver"
    \consists "Piano_pedal_engraver"
    \consists "Piano_pedal_align_engraver"
    \consists "Axis_group_engraver"
    pedalSustainStrings = #'("Ped." "*Ped." "*")
    pedalSustainStyle = #'mixed
    pedalSostenutoStrings = #'("Sost. Ped." "*Sost. Ped." "*")
    pedalSostenutoStyle = #'mixed
    pedalUnaCordaStrings = #'("una corda" "" "tre corde")
    pedalUnaCordaStyle = #'text
    \override SustainPedal.X-offset = #-0.25
    \override SustainPedal.extra-offset = #'(0 . -0.05)
    \override VerticalAxisGroup.staff-affinity = #UP
    \override VerticalAxisGroup.nonstaff-relatedstaff-spacing =
      #'((basic-distance . 2) (minimum-distance . 1.5) (padding . 1) 
(stretchability . 0))
    \override VerticalAxisGroup.nonstaff-unrelatedstaff-spacing =
        #'((basic-distance . 8) (minimum-distance . 4) (padding . 4) 
(stretchability . 10))
    \override VerticalAxisGroup.nonstaff-nonstaff-spacing.padding = #1

Then I use

   \new PianoPedals \mypedalstuff

and everything works "automagically". You might consider defining your own 
custom pedal context, to make your engraving life easier!

Hope that helps,

Kieren MacMillan, composer
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