Notation specific to Harp (muffling, etc.)?

• Dec 5, 2014 - 00:27

Hello! Have done a forum search and not found any information on harp-specific notation like muffling or pedal changes -- any chance that such things will show up soon, or does anyone know of any workarounds in the meantime? Thanks for any information!


I suspect that the reason they are not included is because there is no-one currently on the development team who has the required knowledge to implement them.

Perhaps if you were to provide the necessary information?

In reply to by ChurchOrganist

A decent list of the most common muffling notations for the harp can be found here:

The most significant ones are probably #3/#5, #8, and #10. Essentially, one would need to be able to do the following:

1) put a little plus sign underneath or on top of a note or chord, a bit like an accent marking or a staccato in terms of where it would sit;

2) put a big plus sign in a circle near the staff, most often under the bass staff; and

3) associate the plus-sign-in-circle with a particular note.

They should probably be included under articulations.

All of these come about because the harp is a bit like the piano with no dampers, and one has to explicitly specify dampening a string with a fingertip (muffling the string) in order to clean up certain chords or prevent notes from ringing over a chord where you don't want them (a C# continuing to ring over a D Major chord, for example).

In reply to by fireandair

Plus signs are no problem; they are already on the articulations palette.

The big-plus-in-a-circle symbol you might be able to add from the Master Palette (in 2.0 beta / nightly builds, anyhow) if you can find it. No idea if it's there or not, but if not, it would be worth bringing to the attention of the folks who standardized thids set of music symbols -

If the symbol *is* present, and since you will presumably be using this a lot, you'll probably want to add it to your own customized palette (ctrl_+shift+drag after creating a custom workspace).

I've actually given thought to harp pedaling. I mean, it *can* be done just using plain text, but a dedicated facility like we have for lyrics, chord symbols, & figured bass could be nice.

I'm not sure what specific notation might be required for "muffling", or what else there is that is not harp-specific and not common to other instruments.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

@fireandair: Besides the plus sign that is indeed in the Articulations & Ornements Palette, do you saw that other signs you need are in the symbols of the Bravura font? :

Go to: View -> MasterPalette -> Symbols

harmon mute.jpg
damp on stem.jpg
-The result in the context of a score

_ So, I can reproduce the examples found in the link you provided in your previous message:

harp symbols.png

Attachment Size
harmon mute.jpg 9.36 KB
damp3.jpg 10.35 KB
damp.jpg 4.14 KB
damp on stem.jpg 4.93 KB
harp symbols.png 17.16 KB
symbols.png 7.54 KB

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Adding my 2 cents as a professional harpist with typesetting experience.
The standard muffle symbol used by harpists is a simple circle with a + sign. "Harmon mute, stem out".

It'll be helpful to have a set of pedal changes to select from the palette.
When I was using Finale, I created a whole set. (Ab, A natural symbol, A#, Bb, B natural, B#, etc.)

I'll be happy to help the developers get it in the right format. Thanks for keeping the harp in mind.

In reply to by Lillharp

Since beginning September (to try with a Nightly), you can insert symbols for the harp more easily.
You can do this via the dialog box for symbols, the one that appears when editing text and F2 (or click on the "alpha" button at the bottom left)
So, select a note, or a rest -> Ctlr + T (for staff text) -> F2 -> Musical Symbols -> go down in the drop list to find "Harp techniques"

Look at this videoscreen:
Don't know if this corresponds to your wish?

In reply to by cadiz1

What are the steps for a Mac system?

I'm still looking for an easier way to type Pedal Changes (not just the diagram symbols).
What's the best way to insert the symbol for the Natural Sign as part of the Staff Text? (besides # for sharp, b for flat)

How did you make this pallette with the letters and sharps/flats? I know how to create a custom palette but I don't know how to get the letters with their symbols in there. Thank you!

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