Tremolo repeats

Tremolos can take two forms: alternation between two chords or two notes, and rapid repetition of a single note or chord. Tremolos consisting of an alternation are indicated by adding beams between the notes or chords being alternated, while tremolos consisting of the rapid repetition of a single note are indicated by adding beams or slashes to a single note.

To place tremolo marks between notes, use \repeat with tremolo style:

\relative c'' {
  \repeat tremolo 8 { c16 d }
  \repeat tremolo 6 { c16 d }
  \repeat tremolo 2 { c16 d }
}

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The \repeat tremolo syntax expects exactly two notes within the braces, and the number of repetitions must correspond to a note value that can be expressed with plain or dotted notes. Thus, \repeat tremolo 7 is valid and produces a double dotted note, but \repeat tremolo 9 is not.

The duration of the tremolo equals the duration of the braced expression multiplied by the number of repeats: \repeat tremolo 8 { c16 d16 } gives a whole note tremolo, notated as two whole notes joined by tremolo beams.

There are two ways to put tremolo marks on a single note. The \repeat tremolo syntax is also used here, in which case the note should not be surrounded by braces:

\repeat tremolo 4 c'16

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The same output can be obtained by adding :N after the note, where N indicates the duration of the subdivision (it must be at least 8). If N is 8, one beam is added to the note’s stem. If N is omitted, the last value is used:

\relative {
  c''2:8 c:32
  c: c:
}

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Selected Snippets

Cross-staff tremolos

Since \repeat tremolo expects exactly two musical arguments for chord tremolos, the note or chord which changes staff within a cross-staff tremolo should be placed inside curly braces together with its \change Staff command.

\new PianoStaff <<
  \new Staff = "up" \relative c'' {
    \key a \major
    \time 3/8
    s4.
  }
  \new Staff = "down" \relative c'' {
    \key a \major
    \time 3/8
    \voiceOne
    \repeat tremolo 6 {
      <a e'>32
      {
        \change Staff = "up"
        \voiceTwo
        <cis a' dis>32
      }
    }
  }
>>

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Controlling the appearance of tremolo slashes

Using various properties of the StemTremolo grob it is possible to control the appearance of tremolo slashes.

music = {
  a''4:32 a':
  e''8: \noBeam e':
  a'':[ a':]
  f':[ g':]
  d':[ d':]
}

\new Staff {
  <>^\markup "default"
  \music
}

\new Staff {
  <>^\markup \typewriter "style = #'constant"
  \override StemTremolo.style = #'constant
  \music
}

\new Staff {
  <>^\markup \typewriter "shape = #'rectangle"
  \override StemTremolo.shape = #'rectangle
  \music
}

\new Staff {
  <>^\markup \typewriter "shape = #'beam-like"
  \override StemTremolo.shape = #'beam-like
  \music
}

\new Staff {
  <>^\markup \typewriter "slope = -0.2"
  \override StemTremolo.slope = -0.2
  \music
}

\paper {
  indent = 0
  tagline = ##f
}

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See also

Snippets: Repeats.


LilyPond Notation Reference v2.25.13 (development-branch).