Transposing

Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by breakup, Oct 27, 2015.

  1. breakup

    breakup Mezzo Piano User

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    I recently decided to play some pieces that I had piano music for, and was thinking that I would have to rewrite everything for the trumpet, and that would take some time. Then I tried a couple pieces, just reading the piano music and playing one step higher, and it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be, it just took a little practice till I got it. Has anyone else tried this, and how did it work out?
     
  2. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

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    Every morning school assembly out of hymns ancient and modern for about seven years. After a while, it became second nature. Also helped other transposition intervals slot into place quickly when called for.
     
  3. bumblebee

    bumblebee Fortissimo User

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    That's what I do for my church choir. It gets interesting when you play with an orchestra and the parts you're given are for Eb trumpet, or D trumpet, or F trumpet or C trumpet. At first I would spend many hours with MuseScore transcribing them for Bb but after a few months got used to transposing on the fly (simply too much music to transcribe everything). The easiest for me is going from C to Bb, and transposing the others on the fly is still a very cerebral task.

    --bumblebee
     
  4. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

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    I've been sight transposing C music to Bb from the earliest on as it was about the only music the school could then scrounge. Too, I was reading over my Mother's or Grandmother's left shoulder as they played the piano.

    Just remember you also subtract 2 flats from C music key signature to play on a Bb instrument.
     
  5. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    Uhhh, actually, it is add 2 sharps. Lets say we're playing a piece in C major (concert) written for C trumpet on a Bb trumpet. Since the Bb trumpet is a whole step below the C trumpet, we need to transpose up a whole step for it to sound correctly. Hence C major becomes D major, and the E and B on C trumpet become F# and C#.
     
  6. gunshowtickets

    gunshowtickets Forte User

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    I think he meant "Eb turns into F" when transposing C to Bb.
     
  7. Ed Lee

    Ed Lee Utimate User

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    Actually, it works either way. If you are subtracting flats you automatically add the effect of added sharpening. Thankfully, I've yet to see any Bb trumpet music with 8 or 9 sharps. Well, music for any instrument with more than 7 sharps or flats.
     
  8. Vulgano Brother

    Vulgano Brother Moderator Staff Member

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    C major has no Eb in it! The E in a C part becomes F# in the Bb part.
     
  9. Peter McNeill

    Peter McNeill Utimate User

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    It becomes a necessity when reading over the shoulder of a Piano player, or when playing Bb trumpet from Piano/Guitar or Hymn Books. That is where we learn it quickly. It is like a switch, and once learned, it seems to stick.

    I am amazed at players that can switch from Eb Soprano to Bb to C on the run, reading only the Bb part. That is impressive.

    Or playing Eupho from a Tenor Part, or Alto in the lower register.
     
  10. Sethoflagos

    Sethoflagos Utimate User

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    For some wyrd scales, I find it easier to think of C to Bb transposition as two clockwise steps on the cycle of fifths.

    So two steps round from D# phrygian (5 sharps) gives E# phrygian which is probably best dealt with as F phrygian (5 flats). Cases like these, though rare, have you reading up a diminished third rather than major second.
     

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