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Adjusting a tune to fit comp. requirements

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  • Adjusting a tune to fit comp. requirements

    Reading the 'sea legs' post in the music form got me thinking.

    Posted by pipesofdoom: "You could try playing the third and fourth parts without repeats. Then you have a "four" part tune, but cover all the material."

    What are your thoughts on this? An example of it that I hear often is Black Watch Polka. Our band plays all 5 parts with repeats. But I have heard bands play 2 parts (I think 3rd and 4th parts) without repeats and cover the material in what then sounds like a 4 parted tune.

    Is this acceptable at all in competition whether it be solo or band? If so, then only at certain grade levels?
    PC Load Letter, what the #$%@ does that mean!?

  • #2
    Re: Adjusting a tune to fit comp. requirements

    Well - not real sure of the question, but I will take a stab at it. First off for solo competitions, play the music as written with repeats. If the music requirements state to play (X) number of parts then play that many parts and if they are marked repeated then play the repeats.

    Now as to whether to play a tune with more than 4 parts when only 4 are required. First off there are so many 4 parted tunes, why choose one with more parts? Assuming you have, I would speculate one of two reactions from the judge.
    1) You started it, you finish it - play all the parts - the tune is incomplete without it.
    2) Ok, you did your required parts, you can stop now.
    My comment is to play the tune in full as most PBAs state the number of parts as a minimum. I think you are setting yourself up for mistakes but - what the heck - if you want to that's your decision.

    As far as a band goes, if it is an MSR then I think the same logic applies. If it is a medley it is quite acceptable to play any number of parts and even play different parts in separate times during the medley. For a QMM I think most PBAs state any number of tunes in common or compound time. I think that gives you leeway to play less than the full number of parts so as to create an interesting medley.

    Don't know if that is exactly what you asked, but I think maybe close.

    - Ok2
    - OK2
    If I was any better I would be twins

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    • #3
      Re: Adjusting a tune to fit comp. requirements

      Thanks for the reply, okie.

      I didn't stop to think of the differences between medley and MSR. That's the beauty of medleys, you can get creative.

      I haven't done this in solos, but I just wonder if it's allowed. I would agree that if you choose a 5 part tune for a competition, you should play all 5 parts. Good point about more mistakes. I would bet that different judges would handle it their own way. Some might even tell the piper that they should choose a 4 parted tune.
      PC Load Letter, what the #$%@ does that mean!?

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      • #4
        Re: Adjusting a tune to fit comp. requirements

        Just to make very clear, for solo work, play the tune as written with all repeats. If you are a novice I think some PBAs for march have 2, 2 parted tunes or 1, 4 part. The basic requirement is to play four parts of music. If they are written (which they are for most all 2/4 marches) then play the repeats as well. I have seen competitors DQ'd for not playing a repeat. Make sure you understand your festivals requirements. Some festivals have different requirements based on the PBA and sometimes the festival committee.

        - OK2
        - OK2
        If I was any better I would be twins

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