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Turning half a page


One of the problems of reading music is that, once you start getting pieces that are long enough to stretch over more than two or three pages, you either need enough space for multiple music stands or you have to deal with page turns. This issue is exacerbated when using a tablet device to read the music, which presents the piece one page at a time. One solution is to find some kind of foot controller so you can go backwards and forwards without taking your hands off the instrument but I’m always a little cautious of solutions that require throwing even more components into the mix. My current iPad software of choice for dots, forScore, provides another option though that I’m starting to get comfortable with.

By double tapping the screen, you can access various display options, including half page turns. As long as the piece gives you a few points of respite, you can make one tap to split the screen, with the top part showing the next page, and a second tap to complete the turn. That means extra taps but more opportunity to make them at convenient times.

Even better, of course, is when the person who typeset the music has considered the predicament of the performer and made sure that the layout means such always comes just before a turn (also acceptable is putting the break just after the turn but indicating that the grace period is coming up). That’s something I try to work out when I’m typing up music myself. Meanwhile, with scores that I’ve scanned in, the half-turn option is one of the things that forScore provides which often makes life just that little bit easier.

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