pizzicato

Plucking the string, as opposed to bowing (arco). Notated pizz. Players may put the bow down for extended pizzicato passages.
piano
C3 Bb4 Eb4 A4 E5 C6
forte
C3 B3 Eb4 D5 E5 C6

snap pizz. (Bartok pizz.)

Pulling the string upwards and allowing it to 'snap' sharply against the fingerboard. Notated snap pizz. Often used by Béla Bartók, hence the nickname.
C3 Bb3 Eb4 A4 F5 C6

pizzicato secco

A damped pizzicato. Notated secco.
Secco:

 

 

 

 

 

pizzicato tremolo

Rapid motion of the finger against the string. Notated pizz trem. Tiring to execute for long periods on the viola and rarely used.

 

 

 

 

glissando

Plucked glissando, notated gliss pizz. Note that it is possible to make a gliss away from an open string.
Gb3 Bb3 Bb4 E5

quasi guitar

Violin held sideways against the body and strummed. Notated quasi guitar. Make sure the chord shapes are simple!
quasi guitar

left hand pizz

Plucked with left hand rather than bowing hand. Notated with a + over the note. Use with extreme caution. The fingerings need to be very carefully considered.


The Orchestra: A User's Manual is a free resource and will remain so. It still receives between 8,000 and 16,000 unique visits per month from all over the world. See the testimonials. Thanks to all the donations, I have been able to create this responsive re-design. But the movies and sound clips recorded in 2004 do show their age. I would really like to re-record everything and add many more techniques, especially for solo and ensemble writing. I estimate this will cost around £30,000. If you know a source of such funds, please contact me: a.hugill [at] bathspa.ac.uk