Jump to content
Maestronet Forums

How Do You Play The Notes Under Two Archs ?


Recommended Posts

Hi all,

It is an easy question to many of you. For me, I am still confused

(1) The notes inside the

first (smaller) arch, of curse, on one bow after that there may be some notes under a longer

arch which covers the the first smaller arch. Should I play the rest of notes as if the longer arch

does not exist? (In short, the longer arch has nothing to do with bow direction, a phrase sign?)

(2) If the first small arch is a slur sign, then the longer arch is a bow diredtion sign?

The difference between (1) or (2) is a judgement call? Thank you in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The "arches" are slurs and as such a predominantly "musical markings" (even piano music has them) - as you clearly know. For wind and string intruments they are also an indication to play with continuous breath or bow - as the case may be. However, the musical intent still holds and a compound slur may serve that goal.

Often one of the inner slur marks may serve to tie together two notes of the same pitch as a simplified way of making the notation sight-readable. Other times, such notation indicates the sound is supposed to be very legato but the printed music that follows may indicate need for a bow change within the slur grouping anyway.

In orchestral playing it is common to encouter long slurred passages that are broken up by the section principal so that sufficient volume of sound can be maintained - but the bow changes are made very smoothly.

Sometimes players ignore the slur markings that are technique-related instead of musicallity-related. For example, when playing Kreisler's Schón Rosmarin, Perlman useses separate bows instead of the indicated slurs in the staccato passages. It's an easier way to get the desired effect, even if it is less elegant to watch.

I think you can take your pick based on musical choices until someone you respect musically informs you of a better way.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah, I think the only place you find this is when the inner arch is actually a tie. A tie isn't really a slur, it's just a way of notating a longer note across barlines (or across beats - to make it easier to read). So even though a tie and a slur have the same notation, and give pretty much the same result, they're not exactly the same, and so you end up with ties inside slurs. I'd go ahead and bow with the outer arch for the most part, unless it's impossible, in which case, it's likely the composer is using it more as a phrasing guide (I seem to remember Wagner's Siegfried Idyll being like this).

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.

  • Create New...