Reply To: Braille Music Instruction questions

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Hi there!

Let’s see if I can help with these very good questions!

  1. No, all the music symbols do not need to be on the special symbols page. The Music Braille Code Table of Signs does include indication of symbols that need to be on a SS page – they are indicated by asterisks. Apart from that, I tend to list symbols that I need to look up when transcribing. If I have to look it up, it’s probably not very common and therefore couldn’t hurt being on the list.
  2. Braille order is like alphabetical order, but with using the dot configurations to determine the order. Section 1.1.2. of the Rules of Unified English Braille gives the braille order in a handy table that I actually printed out and put on my wall above my computer. Also, there is an index of signs at the end of the Music Braille Code that lists the symbols in braille order. It is quite useful in putting together your special symbols page.
  3. We use the note C to represent any note just hanging out without a staff (also used in unpitched percussion music).
  4. We have ways of doing fingering charts for the instruments. The method is determined by the instrument.
  5. I’m not entirely sure what you mean by this question. If we are transcribing the print into braille, there won’t be any need for the print any longer. Sometimes when we transcribe for a teacher, we will do a “facsimile” transcription, including elements that are normally omitted from braille music, such as clef signs and the like. But otherwise, I don’t see the need to have anything duplicated.

Let me know if you need any more clarification!