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Re: figured bass in staff context

From: Urs Liska
Subject: Re: figured bass in staff context
Date: Mon, 09 Mar 2020 22:11:14 +0100
User-agent: Evolution 3.34.1-4

Am Montag, den 09.03.2020, 19:43 +0100 schrieb Robert Blackstone:
Hi Derek,

Hi Derek,

I entered your attachment, in  my LilyPond Editor:, and typeset it. (I never use Frescobaldi)
The result looks perfect.

So first of all I want to congratulate you with your first LilyPond-score.


Did you transcribe it from the facsimile of Telemann’s own print, as available on IMSLP, or from a modern version?

Guess what. Telemann’s “Singe-, Spiel, und Generalbaß-Übungen” was also my first LilyPond-project in 2015. So I’m familiar with the difficulties in the facsimile, in particular the clutter on some pages.

About your problem with the BC line: “The problem is that the alignment is off (all single figures should be one level lower)”. 
I do not understand what you mean by this. As far as I know, in your present version it is the standard way of notation. It is also conform Telemann’s own score.
Or do you want the BC-line below the bass staff? That would be easy to do, but it would interfere with the numbers of the remarks

About entering Telemann’s remarks underneath the score, what you did is OK. I used the same way. 

There are a few things in which your version differs from Telemann’s original, in which: a) the vocal line is not beamed 

I noticed that too, but since I don't know the original I didn't mention it.

If you write \autoBeamOff in a voice LilyPond won't beam the notes according to the meter, which is often desirable with vocal parts (of course subject to engraving style). In that case you'll use [ and ] to explicitly use beams, and LilyPond will use that information to assign syllables to notes.

and b) some of his chords have two voices  (in bars 18, 21, 23 and 33.)  

for which you can/have to use temporary polyphony:

    \voiceOne % (this is not structural for the polyphony,
              %  just for the engraving behaviour)
    c'' % will have the stem upwards
  \new Voice {
    c' % stem downwards

Note that there are two ways to express temporary polyphony. The one I used (with \new Voice) lets the upper voice continue throughout and have the other voice be temporary, while there is another syntax (using \\ ) that will have *all* voices be temporary new voices.

It is no big deal though.

One more thing: My score differs in many ways from yours. For instance I never use relative c or something like it. Always the exact pitches. The same with note values: each note has its proper value. Every bar has its own line. It is of great help for spotting errors.

As we mentioned Friday these are matters of coding style, i.e. religious issues ;-) As you can see I would adhere to one of these suggestions (one measure per line) but not to the others. So the best advice here is no matter which style you choose make it consistent.

Another advantage of TeXShop is that I can use a textexpander, Typinator, for complicated commands, shortcuts, overrides, tweaks, like
“\once \override NoteColumn #'force-hshift = #x” or “_\markup {\line {\concat { \dynamic f  }\italic {  rit. }  }}” 
In TeXShop it is also very easy to find the beginning and end of slurs.

Could you please elaborate on these, Robert? Maybe you're underestimating Frescobaldi, otherwise we'd be interested in getting more ideas. What exactly does that text expander do for you, and what do you have to do to prepare it doing so?


If you’re interested I can send you privately my score of 

Best regards,

Robert Blackstone

On 8 Mar 2020, at 14:43, Derek Remeš <address@hidden> wrote:


I’m a new user as of today. I’ve input my first score in LilyPond today (a Telemann song) and I can’t figure out how to enter the figured bass directly into the staff context, as described here because I’ve used Frescobaldi’s template, which has a different setup. The problem is that the alignment is off (all single figures should be one level lower). Unfortunately I don’t know how to make a tiny example of this.

I’m also trying to figure out the best way of entering and translating Telemann’s text at the bottom.entering and translating Telemann’s text at the botA footnote, header, or something else?

Many thanks in advance.

Best wishes,

Derek Remeš


Derek Remeš
Dozent für Musiktheorie an der Hochschule Luzern - Musik
(Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts)
Editor-in-chief of the journal Music Theory and Analysis
Doktorand an der Hochschule für Musik Freiburg
Telefon: +41(0)784223906

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