Accents in 2- Note Slurs

by Dolly
(N Ireland)

When a 2-note slur is over the bar line which note is accented?



Hi Dolly--

The FIRST note of a slur is always accented. This accent is the pianists way of simulation the "attack" of a wind instrument. For example, when a trumpet player encounters a slur of any number of notes, only the FIRST note is articulated ("tongued").

The two note slur is often a case of a dissonance of the first note being resolved in the second--as is common in Mozart ( the "Manheim sigh"). Dissonances are always stressed and the resolution is always played more quietly.

In the case where the first note of a measure is meant to be very noticeably accented (the Irish Jig comes to mind), one would want to accent the first note of the slur at a level which allows the
second note to still be louder than the notes that follow it in the measure.

Hope this helps!


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