gruppetto

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gruppetto (It.). Grouplet. The turn, a type of ornament in vocal and instr. mus. gruppetto implies a 4-note figure, the note above, the note itself, the note below, and the note itself. This figure is perf. after the note itself or instead of it, according to whether the turn sign is placed after the note itself or over it.

The inflection of the upper or lower note of the turn (in either form) is shown by the placing of a sharp, flat, natural, etc., sign above or below.

When the gruppetto occurs after the note the taste of the performer governs the division of the time available. The general principle seems to be that the gruppetto is to be perf. fairly rapidly. To bring this about, the first example just given (if occurring in a slow tempo) might be treated thus:

whilst in a very quick tempo it might be treated as follows (indeed there might be no time to treat it in any other way):

The number of different examples given in different textbooks is very large, and no two textbooks quite agree, but the above statement gives the chief general principles accepted by all. They also apply, of course, to the inverted turn, which begins with the lower auxiliary note, instead of the upper one.