Key signatures and accidentals

Bedford Community Chamber Orchestra


Key signatures and accidentals

Monday 13 March 2017

With just three more rehearsals before our concert on 1 April Sam took us through some detailed work on Sibelius’ Karelia Suite; dynamics seemed to be the biggest focus for most members of the orchestra but for the flute section, it was key signatures and accidentals (which, strangely, are always deliberate, one of life’s conundrums). There will be much individual practice from the flutes before next week to save embarrassment on the night.
The flutes play in the first and last movement of Karelia, both of which require extensive counting of rest bars before our entries. It has been noted that the conductor, be it Sam or Ian, regularly stops play just as the well-counted flautists take a collective large breath. We shan’t take offence.
After the break for much-needed coffee, extended for the flutes because we are tacet in the second movement, we reviewed some earlier work on the final movement of Beethoven’s 2nd which contains more than its fair share of deliberate accidentals, a wide range of dynamics and articulation. Apparently it’s got to be good as that’s the last piece in the concert; it’ll certainly wake up those members of the audience who have the nerve to nod off. It’s the kind of piece that makes you glad that you drove your family crazy with scales and arpeggios.
So I leave it to the readers of this blog to discern whether the flutes mastered the ‘cross’ fingering required to take account of both key signatures and accidental.
Kathy Taylor.

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