Transposition (music)

Under transposition is understood in the music, the proportional change of the height of tones to a certain interval.

The simplest type of transposition is the octave, in which the sounds are the same name, but are offset by one octave up or down. In transpositions with other intervals also the key and thus the general signs need to be changed in most cases. For example, transposed from D major to F major, one exchanges the prescribed two crosses ( for " fis " and " cis " ) against b ( instead of " h") and then sets all sounds a minor third up or major sixth down.

Historic designs

For historical brass instruments ( for example, natural trumpet or natural horn ), it was due to the absence of chromatic playing ability is not possible to play keys away from the mood (see also harmonic series ). So the musicians continued to vote or change arcs of different lengths (for example, in the trumpet A -loop, C -loop, It Bow, F - arc ), so as to change the mood. So you do not have to read the new series of notes for the altered mood, the composer considered this and put the C notation so that the instrumentalists only change the arc and could continue playing as usual. These bodies to change the sheets marked the composer with the transposition provisions (eg " trumpet in F").

With modern, chromatic playable instruments this problem is eliminated so that the musicians are forced to make this change of notation " in the head" to reverse and back into every note " sounding" convert. Otherwise you would have to rewrite the entire literature, it could up to now not agree.

Changing the pitch

Often, songs or other pieces are too high for a pitch (Franz Schubert wrote his songs for high voice ). Here the transposition can be a great help in a more appropriate location. This tradition was maintained by musicians today: Most of the song cycles of great composers There are separate editions for different voice types that were transposed into corresponding keys. Also arrangements for ( Big) tied with singing are traditionally adjusted to the optimum pitch of the singer or the singer. The same is true for music lessons at school.

The possibility of transposition, however, seduced especially beginners to technical difficulties to go out of the way, which would have to cope with a bit of practice and guidance, and could open the way for a gradual expansion of vocal range.

In instrumental music, it may be as well that a piece that pleasantly, " is ", for example, on the flute, is inconvenient for an oboist and too high and is played by him better in a deeper position. Johann Sebastian Bach, who has often fashioned their own melodies or whole pieces for other instruments, has applied this practice again and again.

Technical facilitation

If songs are in difficult key signatures, it is often difficult for beginners to cope with the abundance of signs. The famous English horn solo from Dvořák's Symphony From the New World, which is in D flat major in the original, you could transpose in a piano album for children about to C major, so it can be played exclusively with white keys:

But even for professional musicians, it may be useful to transpose a piece of music: works for wind instruments are often in flat keys and those for Strings in sharp keys, because the opposite is the sound and the technique of the instruments. Play now about a cellist, a bassoon - piece in A flat major, it can more brilliant and more natural sound when he transposed it in a more pleasant tone on the cello, such as A major.

Transposing instruments

Transposing instruments usually have individual voices that are listed already transposed, the musician must therefore do not care, but plays what is in the notes, and it sounds the correct pitch. The following excerpt from Beethoven's 5.Symphonie (start ) the voice of the Bb clarinet is shown, that sounds a whole step lower than they quoted. ( a) is the ( hinauftransponierte ) orchestral part, (b ) the desired and achieved sound, a whole tone lower:

At times must a musician but on his transposing instrument from a non- transposed to play so-called C- voice when a clarinetist, for example, takes the role of the flute or violin. In this case the transposition in real time in the head of the musician must occur.

In the orchestral literature one sometimes finds C- Clarinets, such as in the symphonies of Beethoven or Schubert, or the " Barber of Seville" by Rossini, to cope with the sometimes super-fast passages on the now little more usual C clarinets lot easier would. In some works of Richard Strauss and Richard Wagner to find even votes for a bass clarinet in A, which must be played by a semitone lower than written in the absence of such instruments with a bass clarinet in B flat.

Particularly expensive can that be when horn players who have to cope with a variety of transpositions in natural horn parts. The figure below shows a further detail of the Beethoven symphony is in the notes ( a), should sound ( b ), for which on the F horn ( c ) must be used:

Electronic transposition ( Sampling)

When a sampler sampled from the original instruments sounds can be transposed.

  • If at the same time changes the playback speed, the pitch changes (similar to a phonograph record ). However, this will also change the waveform of the sound, which is the result deteriorated. Illustrative example is the so-called " Mickey Mouse voice" in electronically hochtransponierten recordings.
  • Unlike the computationally expensive " piecemeal " processing of the samples are played faster in the extremely short time portions of the sound wave and then duplicated so that the length of the sound does not change. One problem, however, remains even with this method, the shift of the formants, because a higher / lower sound played or sung usually has a different sound characteristics electronically transposed as a.

Transposition table ( in percent): -8 158.74 -7 149,83 -6 141.42 -5 133.48 -4 126.00 -3 118.92 -2 112.25 -1 105.95 no 100.00   1 94.39   2 89.09   3 84.09   4 79.37   5 74.92   6 70.71   7 66.74   8 63.00 Thus, it follows the exponential function.

Double or half pitch is reached at a transposition of twelve tones.