wind player assistance, please.

• Oct 22, 2018 - 15:01

The first page of a score below (pdf)

This is a suite of dances each in a different key. This first dance is in e minor. SO...
I put the clarinet in A. However, it looks awkward with the Bass Clarinet in B flat. How usual is it for a bass clarinet player to bring two instruments along? (to put it in A as well.)
I thought I'd keep the trumpet in C throughout to make my life easier. Cs are now common, yes?

Also, I consider it high sacrilege to have a key signature with the F horn. (perhaps a function of my age?) How do I remove just ITS key sig?

Attachment Size
Neschastnik.pdf 35.27 KB


A bass clarinets are almost non-existent today. They were made for a short time around the turn of the 20th century. I have seen several scores from this era written for the A bass clarinet and even had the A bass clarinet added to MuseScore for this reason, but this is only so I would not have to recreate the instrument every time I ran into a score like this. If this is an original score I would definitely use the Bb bass clarinet written in treble clef and I wouldn't use clef changes (as has be done historically) to avoid ledger line since Bass Clarinetists are used to them.

In reply to by mike320

Thanks, Mike. This score is from '82 when I wrote everything (except Eng + Fr horn) in C (parts in key). There were plenty of instrumentalists around then and I never even heard of an A bass clarinet.
I never change clefs for clarinets. I like clarinets in treble and do prefer bass cl. in bass.
Interesting research you've done re: early 20th.

In reply to by penne vodka

I've run across several A bass clarinets in Classical scores from around 1900 so I looked for info on them because I had never heard of one either. In Germany, it is common to have the Bass Clarinet written in the bass clef. Composers who studied in Germany sometimes follow this, but not always. Everywhere else, Treble clef for the Bass Clarinet is more common though not universal, probably because the composer studied in Germany.

Music from when the Bass Clarinet was first commonly used in orchestras had some variations on this, Dukas being the most confusing. It took me a couple of hours of trial and error to figure out that he was writing like he was writing for a Bass Clarinet in Treble clef (transposed an octave plus a major second) with everything below about the G line on the treble clef, which is most of the Sourcer's Apprentice, written on the Bass Clef to avoid ledger lines. Along these same lines you can see from examining baroque era scores that it took a while to decide on a consensus for which clefs to write various instruments as they were invented. In a Handel piece I'm working on, there are almost no ledger lines on the organ due to the constant change of clefs and use of ottavas.

I glanced at my next project which is Janie by E. Jaques Delcroze (IMSLP 10431). I haven't studied it enough to figure out what he did with the bass clarinet because the score calls it a Bb clarinet and the key signature (once the notes start) are like an A Clarinet. It will be interesting.

In reply to by penne vodka

My projects are for my sanity since I'm not working. Hopefully they will end up in Open Score. Others also find some lesser known pieces also. For example, my copy of the Beach symphony has been performed at least twice. I write my own symphonic music but stopped sharing it on after they changed the site in protest. That, and putting them on gained me nothing. Related to this, I learn about composition from looking at compositions so I copy them to see and hear them in MuseScore.

To remove the key signature from one staff, press ctrl, drag the key signature with an x (found in the advanced workspace) to the staff release the mouse then release ctrl. This will show proper notes with accidentals.

In reply to by mike320

Thanks. The key sig remover works fine. And I understand about sanity!

Do you mean Amy Beach? Gaelic Symphony. I remember one listening with score. I liked it, but cannot remember it. I seem to remember a modal sound, free from secondary dominants...not very angsty or dramatic, but pleasant and well crafted.

Picking up from a previous thread:

Once one can read music the best way to learn is by reading scores and listening as you have. Formal education merely guides and challenges. I don't wish to sound patronizing to say your well spoken on the subject and have a better handle on notation that I've gained from years of academic drudgery.
I've seen Made with MuseScore and it does not seem a forum for critical review of the music as opposed to a showcase of MuseScore's capability. I've seen entries without comments. I also do not want to make unsolicited suggestions, though I've seen other pages within the MS world (.com?) where critiques are solicited.

You mentioned a change and "protest". What about?

In reply to by penne vodka

The Beach symphony I refer to is Amy Beach's Gaelic Symphony. It's two main reasons for being used seem to be the "Gaelic" title and that it was written by a woman in the 1890's, which I'm sure you are aware was not common. Otherwise I agree it is not outstanding.

Concerning Made with MuseScore, there seems to be little (as opposed to no) interest in these forums to critique scores. There also seems to be little interest in truly giving constructive criticism on the various groups I've seen so I don't know how to approach this topic from a better perspective. There are a lot of very talented young composers on if you listen to their original works.

When was ported to the new web server it was so buggy and unlike the previous site that I felt like I was paying to be a beta tester than being given the service I paid for. I not so quietly cancelled my future MuseScore pro payments and removed anything original I had on the site. From posts on the forums, it seems bugs are introduced regularly to the .com site that I don't remember seeing as often before the new site. I used to look at the .com site every day and participate in discussions. Only in the past couple of weeks have I done more than add an occasional copied score to my profile. In the last couple of weeks I've actually looked to see if anyone has commented on my scores. I've also worked a lot more on my original music the past couple of months, so maybe there's something in my mind that connects the two, I don't know.

In reply to by mike320

Constructive criticism is difficult as you do not know at what stage the composer is, how serious an endeavor s/he undertakes and how critical should the critic be, etc. Somehow the goals, tastes, aesthetics,etc of one composer clash with those of another. And there are so many different styles... I left a few comments here and there and thus far have not been taken out of context or intent.

I've visited your page and saw a few interesting pieces as well as the fine copy work you do. I have not seen any original works by you. (I guess you pulled them all ...or I don't know where to look. Actually, I wonder why folks are not concerned with theft. Even for a work "protected" by copyright, who wants the hassle?) To be sure, as time permits I could promise you a good listening and honest opinion. Our tastes seem similar...I wouldn't mind your opinion of mine.

There are some good young composers here. I wonder where they study, with whom and what are their influences. To bad we do not have a composer's forum here. I gather that the vast majority are just concerned with accurate score production, which is to be expected, but it is music we are scoring, whether it be Ravel's or ours. I would suggest another chapter in the forum for this, but would likely be referred where there are more groups than stars in a galaxy each with many members we I know nothing about (musically)which makes productive conversation challenging.

In reply to by mike320

If you're interested, the bass clarinet in Janie is actually a Bb bass clarinet the entire way. The editor did something I haven't seen from the 1890's and early 20th century but was common in the days of Haydn & Mozart. He kept the B-flat clarinets key signature either blank or 2 sharps. The 2 sharps were not always used, just a limited number of sharps or flats. Apparently in the early days of the Clarinet, they didn't put too many sharps or flats into the key signatures for the musicians. These were the first common transposing instruments (besides horns and trumpets that were always written with no key signature), so I guess they were trying to make things easier for the musicians. In this song, the no key signature sections would be in the key of C# (7 sharps).

What is interesting is that when the key changes the measure after rehearsal mark 7, he did not reenter a new key signature for the A clarinets that have the same 2 sharps the Bb flat clarinets had the measure before. I think this is confusing for someone looking at the conductor's score.

In reply to by mike320

It would be confusing. I'll check it out when you put Janie up.

I can see horns and trumpets having no key signature because they had no valves, but I didn't realize this happened to clarinets at first, or even bass clarinets.

I don't recall the first use of the clarinet, except the symphonic literature when Mozart scored them in nos. 39 and 41, adding them later to # 40. the keys of these works were not far afield. I don't know who used the bass clarinet first, or in a symphony. I'll guess s/he was French or Belgian.

BTW - it's rainy today, appropriately. It is the 125th anniversary of the death of the man I affectionately refer to as the Old Man. On the 100th anniversary in 1993 I attended the Tchaikovsky exhibit at Carnegie Hall in NYC where he had once conducted the opening concert in 1891.

In reply to by penne vodka

I have several projects going on at the same time. One of my projects is Handel's oratorio "Saul" which includes a Bb Clarinet part written in 1738. I've been working on it for some time. Since Baroque music uses a lot of MuseScore's capabilities I've been entering it into version 3 to test it and help find bugs. I've been quite successful if you look at the issue tracker. I expect to add it to sometime after the 3.0 final is released and the .com site starts supporting it. (Sorry for letting my mind wonder). My point in mentioning this is that I don't remember the clarinet having a prominent or solo role, though I could be wrong.

The Handel Symphony 104 in D I have on my page has the A clarinet in the key of F, which is the key of concert D. When the rest of the orchestra switches to the key of F, the clarinet stay with the F key signature. I'm guessing this is so it does not have 4 flats written.

The true bass clarinet started showing up in the 1830's. There were parts that called for a "Bass clarinet" in the late 1700's, but there was no true bass clarinet in existence.

I've been to all of the states but North Dakota and Wisconsin, but I've never been to New York city. I drove around it. Attending any symphonic orchestra at Carnegie hall would be a dream for me, and Tchaikovsky, as you may know, is one of my favorite composers. Here in Fort Worth its cloudy but won't rain today. I guess it's appropriate to have rain on the day of the death of such a notable composer.

In reply to by mike320

The acoustics in Carnegie are awesome, as compared to the horrible string tone which emanates from Avery Fisher Hall (NY Philharmonic), unless they fixed it (again.) The last time there, around the same time as Tchaikovsky exhibit, I saw the Cleveland Orchestra under one of the von Dohnanyi s. The Mozart piano concerto was exquisite, but the Dvorak 9th (which he wrote on his US tour which included Carnegie) was boring because it was so clean and careful. Somehow we get used to the first performance of things. In my case I first heard it with the NY Philharmonic under Bernstein in a notably bold performance - very edgy, very LARGE. Very New York! (I know...not as big as Texas ;-))
I know you meant "Haydn" symphony 104.

In reply to by mike320

I thought I'd share this with you, although you probably know this:

I was looking to see how common bass clarinets which go down to low C are (though I never wanted to go below E flat) and I came across the reason they stopped making those in A.
From wikipedia:

>>>Until the last half of the 20th century, no new bass clarinets pitched in A were produced. For a brief period starting in the late 1970s, a bass clarinet with Boehm style keywork and pitched in A (and keyed to low E♭, even though the original parts seldom descend below written low E) was again produced by Selmer Paris. While perfectly functional, such instruments were both expensive and a significant physical burden to the player, who would have to carry two heavy bass clarinets to rehearsals and performances. For these two reasons more than anything else, few modern bass clarinets in A have been sold. At some point after the 1980s, Selmer ceased production of the bass clarinet in A, although examples are still available from factory stock.[citation needed]<<<

I know the feeling. I played sousaphone in junior high.

In reply to by penne vodka

I was already aware of that information. I had forgotten that A Bass Clarinets made an attempted comeback in the 70's, but I'm not aware of music that was written for it at that time. I knew it flopped. The extra notes at the bottom of the A bass clarinet are so seldom used it's definitely easier for a professional to transpose to a B-flat clarinet than to carry to bass clarinets.

I played the sousaphone/tuba my senior year in High School and had one at home for practice. I was glad I didn't have to try to carry it home every night.

yeah it is easy enough for trumpet in c also i gotta a question for anybody how do you create a song from scratch i want to make a song from scratch and sorry that i am not very helpful

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