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From Serra to SanchoMusic and Pageantry in the California Missions$
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Craig H. Russell

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780195343274

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195343274.001.0001

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Notation and Music Theory

Notation and Music Theory

(p.78) Chapter 2 Notation and Music Theory
From Serra to Sancho

Craig H. Russell

Oxford University Press

Music notation, as employed by the friars, is explored in this chapter. Notational choices tell us much about the style and interpretation, as well as hinting at who might be singing, how many people are performing, and whether or not instruments are playing. Square- or diamond-shaped notes indicate accompanied homophony, whereas oval note heads indicate a more modern Baroque or Classical style. Each voice follows a different color of notation, thus enabling multiple voices to be indicated on a single staff. Similarly, clefs indicate not only pitch locations but also performance practice, such as transposition. Alternatim performance was a daily occurrence in the missions, in which a long text would be subdivided into alternating subsections that contrasted in style, texture, and density. This chapter deals with instrumental passages—indicated by the terms música or tocata—that often were interspersed with vocal phrases. Finally, the modes and their emotive associations are explored.

Keywords:   music notation, clefs, performance practice, alternatim, performance, toccata, modes

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