transposing instrument

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transposing instrument

n
(Instruments) a musical instrument, esp a horn or clarinet, pitched in a key other than C major, but whose music is written down as if its basic scale were C major. A piece of music in the key of F intended to be played on a horn pitched in F is therefore written down a fourth lower than an ordinary part in that key and has the same key signature as a part written in C
References in periodicals archive ?
He's very conversant with the ranges and relative agilities of the orchestral family, and he's a fine orchestrator, so it's more just checking the more obscure details - like transposing instruments, lineups and that everything is physically comfortable for the players."
However, the term is often taken in the same narrow sense as the word transposing in "transposing instruments," that is, changing pitch by a fixed interval that cannot be an octave or multiple of an octave.
The "Transposing instruments" article in Grove Music Online comments: "An instruction is often printed to indicate the reformed bass-clef notation; otherwise it has to be discovered by context." (10) Compare this situation to the one involving crooks described below (under item 9), which is obviously related.
However, players encounter an additional, highly troublesome issue when playing band and orchestral scores: how does one handle transposing instruments?
Later, Schoenberg suggests that players of transposing instruments be taught to conceptualize sound at concert pitch.
The only caveat about Schott's very handsome edition is that while transposing instruments are notated at concert pitch, I have seen no indication to this effect anywhere in the score.
Linke's identification of other hands in the manuscripts also brings to light Strauss's reliance on arrangers to add horn and wind parts--difficult transposing instruments with mechanical properties that only real experts could handle well.