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What does the expression "ocarina in G" mean?; Is it a key? No! A tonic? No! It is... transposition!
Topic Started: 15 Aug 2011, 02:13 AM (25,797 Views)
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Fat Mouse >^_^<

Nothing to see here.
Random rant in a hissy fit and a general 'I hate people' mood was edited out.
Edited by Achint, 10 Apr 2013, 03:57 PM.
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Play what makes you happy. - Achint

Were any of the answers helpful, or did you have more questions about transposing? The conversation strayed a bit, but I'd be happy to explain it a different way if you send me a PM. Transposing can get pretty confusing, but we're happy to help if you need anything else. The circle of fifths chart really made it a lot easier for me to understand. :)
Edited by Ocarinadiva, 10 Apr 2013, 06:58 PM.
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A G and a C transverse ocarina are both fully chromatic, so they can both play in any key, because you can play all the sharps and flats on either. Like Mark said, range is the only issue. You may not be able to play the highest notes, or the lowest notes on a particular ocarina, which would require you to either use a different ocarina, or transpose the song to a different key.

Playing in any major or minor key means that some notes will be natural, while others will be sharp or flat. Because of that, some keys will be easier to play in because they will have fewer accidentals (another name for sharp or flat). You can use the circle of fifths as a guide to know which keys are easy to play on your ocarina. Here is a link:

Circle of Fifths

Okay, so on the circle of fifths, you can see that C is in between F and G. Those are the easy keys to play on a C ocarina. If you play in C major on a C ocarina, the key signature will have no accidentals. If you play in G major or F major on a C ocarina, you will have one accidental. If you play in D major on a C ocarina, you will have two accidentals. The further away you get from the home position on the circle of fifths, the more accidentals you will have in the key signature. A key with four or more accidentals is not impossible to play, but it is more challenging, especially for faster music.

Now for a G ocarina, just look at the position on the Circle of fifths. G is the new "home position". If you play in G major on a G ocarina, you will have no accidentals again just like playing in C major on a C ocarina. If you play in C major or D major on your G ocarina, you will have one accidental, because it is one position away from G. For A major, you will have two accidentals on a G ocarina.

Now, if you have a tricky piece of music that is written in B major, if you happen to have a B ocarina, you can play in B major with no accidentals just like playing in C major on a C ocarina. But most people don't have a B occarina XD. So, by using the circle of fifths, you can easily see that on a C ocarina, you would have five accidentals to play in B major, which is pretty challenging. But if you happen to have a G ocarina, there would be only four accidentals for B major, and if you have a D ocarina, then only three. Three is a lot more manageable than five! The circle of fifths is a very handy tool.

I hope that made sense. Let me know if it didn't. :)

This mini guide really needs its own topic. Very well written and very easy to understand

Edited by Philip, 19 Jun 2013, 12:57 AM.
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