Timpani - how to notate tremolo with accents?


Senior Member
So, I know how to notate tremolo*

I also know how to notate accents.

But how do you notate it when there are accents (like in the audio example?) Do you put three more notes on the staff, all with tremolo markings?



* Does it matter which I select in Sibelius, be it 8th, 16th, etc.? Or would the timpanist just do a really fast roll regardless?




Active Member
< Casually digs up a random thread >

Is my notation in the wrong octave? That's where the samples are in the patch :/
Your notation was one octave too high. When importing MIDI into a score, it's always much more secure to have a fairly good knowledge of the sounding octaves so you can rely on your ears rather than on the import. It tends to be normalized, but some banks don't always comply and you have to move the notes up or down one octave (if not two)

It's especially true with timpani / other chromatic percussions patches where you have a set of octaves for single hits, then another dedicated to rolls, for example. Importing this into a score without further editing is not going to look great, let alone be accurate ^^

Nick Batzdorf

^ Like this.

But I would not tie tremolo notes since by nature they are repeating and not tied.
Absolutely, and the two mean different things.

On big band charts quarter notes pretty much have to be marked long or short ( . or v or _ etc.). This is similar.

As a practical matter, without the tie the notes will be a little shorter than a full quarter, and with the tie it'll just be accents on each beat within a "sustained" whole note.
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Senior Member
What Nick said. Sometimes I use a dashed slur in Finale for such things to show the connectedness, if that's what I want. Works for unmeasured string tremolos as well.