You are here: MusicXML Reference > Score Schema (XSD) > Elements > Element: notations

Element: notations


Notations refer to musical notations, not XML notations. Multiple notations are allowed in order to represent multiple editorial levels. The print-object attribute, added in Version 3.0, allows notations to represent details of performance technique, such as fingerings, without having them appear in the score.

Derived By

Type notations

Name  Type  Required?  Default  Description 
print-object  yes-no  No 
Content Model

Contains elements as defined in the following table.

Component  Type  Occurs  Default  Description 
footnote  formatted-text  1..1  The footnote element specifies editorial information that appears in footnotes in the printed score. It is defined within a group due to its multiple uses within the MusicXML schema.
level  level  1..1  The level type is used to specify editorial information for different MusicXML elements.
accidental-mark  accidental-mark  1..1 

An accidental-mark can be used as a separate notation or as part of an ornament. When used in a notation, position and placement are relative to the note.

arpeggiate  arpeggiate  1..1 

The arpeggiate type indicates that this note is part of an arpeggiated chord.

articulations  articulations  1..1 

Articulations and accents are grouped together here.

dynamics  dynamics  1..1 

Dynamics can be associated either with a note or a general musical direction. To avoid inconsistencies between and amongst the letter abbreviations for dynamics (what is sf vs. sfz, standing alone or with a trailing dynamic that is not always piano), we use the actual letters as the names of these dynamic elements. The other-dynamics element allows other dynamic marks that are not covered here, but many of those should perhaps be included in a more general musical direction element. Dynamics elements may also be combined to create marks not covered by a single element, such as sfmp.
These letter dynamic symbols are separated from crescendo, decrescendo, and wedge indications. Dynamic representation is inconsistent in scores. Many things are assumed by the composer and left out, such as returns to original dynamics. Systematic representations are quite complex: for example, Humdrum has at least 3 representation formats related to dynamics. The MusicXML format captures what is in the score, but does not try to be optimal for analysis or synthesis of dynamics.

fermata  fermata  1..1 

The fermata text content represents the shape of the fermata sign. An empty fermata element represents a normal fermata. The fermata type is upright if not specified.

glissando  glissando  1..1 

Glissando and slide types both indicate rapidly moving from one pitch to the other so that individual notes are not discerned. The distinction is similar to that between NIFF's glissando and portamento elements. A glissando sounds the half notes in between the slide and defaults to a wavy line. The optional text is printed alongside the line.

non-arpeggiate  non-arpeggiate  1..1 

The non-arpeggiate type indicates that this note is at the top or bottom of a bracket indicating to not arpeggiate these notes. Since this does not involve playback, it is only used on the top or bottom notes, not on each note as for the arpeggiate type.

ornaments  ornaments  1..1 

Ornaments can be any of several types, followed optionally by accidentals. The accidental-mark element's content is represented the same as an accidental element, but with a different name to reflect the different musical meaning.

other-notation  other-notation  1..1  The other-notation type is used to define any notations not yet in the MusicXML format. This allows extended representation, though without application interoperability. It handles notations where more specific extension elements such as other-dynamics and other-technical are not appropriate.
slide  slide  1..1 

Glissando and slide types both indicate rapidly moving from one pitch to the other so that individual notes are not discerned. The distinction is similar to that between NIFF's glissando and portamento elements. A slide is continuous between two notes and defaults to a solid line. The optional text for a is printed alongside the line.

slur  slur  1..1 

Slur types are empty. Most slurs are represented with two elements: one with a start type, and one with a stop type. Slurs can add more elements using a continue type. This is typically used to specify the formatting of cross-system slurs, or to specify the shape of very complex slurs.

technical  technical  1..1  Technical indications give performance information for individual instruments.
tied  tied  1..1 

The tied type represents the notated tie. The tie element represents the tie sound.

tuplet  tuplet  1..1 

A tuplet element is present when a tuplet is to be displayed graphically, in addition to the sound data provided by the time-modification elements. The number attribute is used to distinguish nested tuplets. The bracket attribute is used to indicate the presence of a bracket. If unspecified, the results are implementation-dependent. The line-shape attribute is used to specify whether the bracket is straight or in the older curved or slurred style. It is straight by default.
Whereas a time-modification element shows how the cumulative, sounding effect of tuplets and double-note tremolos compare to the written note type, the tuplet element describes how this is displayed. The tuplet element also provides more detailed representation information than the time-modification element, and is needed to represent nested tuplets and other complex tuplets accurately.
The show-number attribute is used to display either the number of actual notes, the number of both actual and normal notes, or neither. It is actual by default. The show-type attribute is used to display either the actual type, both the actual and normal types, or neither. It is none by default.

Referenced By

      <note default-x="122">
        <stem default-y="26">up</stem>
            <fingering default-x="2" default-y="31" placement="above">3</fingering>



See note


MusicXML Documentation Home
Last built 2/20/2015

7007 Winchester Circle, Suite 140

Boulder, CO 80301