“From Piano to Strings”
I bought this book some years ago and was so enthusiastic about this approach that already while reading it, I knew that one day I would create a blog about it. Now after having studied it in depth and used it on my own piano compositions, this day finally arrived. I could not resist any longer to share it with others, so here it is!
So what is this book all about? It’s about transcribing piano music for string orchestra. There is a Handbook (Professional Orchestration: A Practical Handbook – “From Piano to Strings”), a workbook (Professional Orchestration: A Practical Workbook) and lots of audio examples in mp3 format.
You can find more information on the publisher’s website here:
btw. – “I am not in any way”… getting money for pointing you to this site, just so you know.
Because all the music examples in these books are copyrighted, I will not use any material from it in this blog, instead, I will use a collection of fourteen piano pieces titled “Moments” that I wrote some years ago. Through these piano pieces I will point out which piano idioms and patters are being used (as described in the reference chart below) and show how they can be translated into idioms that are typical for string playing.
I use Sibelius 7.5 for notating the score and the NotePerformer sound library to create the playback. This library does a very good job in playing back the score without the need to adjust all kind of settings or adding playback information in the score. More important though, it will divide the string sections whenever you use more than a single note on a staff, creating that way the correct volume and balance as it would be when played by a live string orchestra. For more information about NotePerformer, have a look at their website here.
I hope that reading these blog pages and hearing the arrangements will inspire you to create your own arrangements from your favorite piano pieces, or even better, create completely new music for strings!
Start by reading the pages that you can acess via the menus at the top of the page. After that, start reading the blog posts.
p.s. If you would like to buy a copy of the piano album “Moments”, you can do so by going to the Lulu online store here: “Moments for piano”