Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

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yang
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Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by yang » Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:43 pm

I want to use sfp within a dynamic context of pp. Can you put pp and sfp under the same note? It's the starting note of the phrase and I think it's odd to put the pp to indicate the dynamic level of the whole section before the section starts (under a rest or barline...). Isn't it?
Also, would sfp (or sfz) be played differently within different dynamic context? For example, should it be played as having a stronger attack in the overall dynamic context of mf than in pp? Or are they always played the same (from f to p)?
As an illustration of my confusion, what dynamic level in general would you play seeing the music in the picture? The accent and sfp combination is my attempt for the saxes to imitate the piano's decay effect... I'm not sure how successful it would be in live playing. Any suggestion of notation would be highly appreciated!
Thank you very very much!
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Screen Shot 2020-12-18 at 9.17.42 AM.png

Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

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motet
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by motet » Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:48 pm

How about sfpp? Players will know what that means.

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David Ward
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by David Ward » Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:57 pm

I don't know whether or not this would give what you want (from real musicians, playback may not co-operate), but I have seen directions such as msfp and (I seem to remember) msfpp in some scores, especially from the early twentieth century.
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yang
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by yang » Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:12 pm

Thank you! How about in the context of mf, f, ff, etc.? The idea is to do this first-loud-then-soft thing within the dynamic context...
motet wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:48 pm
How about sfpp? Players will know what that means.

yang
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Joined: Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:55 pm
Operating System: Mac

Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by yang » Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:13 pm

Thank you!
David Ward wrote:
Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:57 pm
I don't know whether or not this would give what you want (from real musicians, playback may not co-operate), but I have seen directions such as msfp and (I seem to remember) msfpp in some scores, especially from the early twentieth century.

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motet
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by motet » Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:25 pm

Rereading your initial post, the piano (the instrument) to my ear does not decay as quickly as sfp. Perhaps ordinary accents?

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John Ruggero
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by John Ruggero » Sat Dec 19, 2020 1:14 pm

I think that yang wants a percussive attack and immediate drop off, which is what one gets on every note on a piano. sfpp or even sfppp without the accent marks should do it.
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Anders Hedelin
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Re: Notation question about using sfp within a dynamic context

Post by Anders Hedelin » Sat Dec 19, 2020 5:29 pm

If the idea is to imitate a piano tone on other instruments this might work:
Imitating piano 1.PNG
or:
Imitating piano 2.PNG
or:
Imitating piano 3.PNG
I've seen quite a few composers using both sf and accents together, but in my opinion that's overkill, and cluttering.
In this context all of the repeated diminuendi are understood as starting from the same level (no need to repeat the pp).
(Personally I would prefer the notation in the third example, but that might be a matter of taste.)
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