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African Music and Dance in Print
Part 3 of 7: Staff
By Doris Green
(more articles from this author)
2003-06-12
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All notation systems use a staff. Labanotation uses a three column vertical staff wherein the centerline separates the left and right sides of the body. All three lines are connected at the bottom by a horizontal line forming the base of the staff. The staff is read from bottom to top. Accordingly, Greenotation uses the same three column vertical staff of which the centerline divides right and left sides. The right column indicates sounds played with the right hand or the right side of an instrument. The left column indicates sounds played with the left hand and or the left side of instrument.

In dance notation there are subdivisions within the three vertical columns outside the three column staff. These columns define specific parts of the body.

Symbols that are placed on the staff side by side are played simultaneously in time.

Symbols written one after the other are executed consecutively in time.

Absence of a symbol within a column indicates a rest. A double line is placed at the beginning and end of a composition or score.


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