1.4.2 Short repeats

This section discusses how to input short repeats. Short repeats can take two forms: slashes or percent signs to represent repeats of a single note, a single measure or two measures, and tremolos otherwise.


Percent repeats

Repeated short patterns are printed once, and the repeated pattern is replaced with a special sign.

The syntax is

\repeat percent number musicexpr

where musicexpr is a music expression.

Patterns that are shorter than one measure are replaced by slashes.

\repeat percent 4 { c128 d e f }
\repeat percent 4 { c64 d e f }
\repeat percent 5 { c32 d e f }
\repeat percent 4 { c16 d e f }
\repeat percent 4 { c8 d }
\repeat percent 4 { c4 }
\repeat percent 2 { c2 }

[image of music]

Patterns of one or two measures are replaced by percent-like symbols.

\repeat percent 2 { c4 d e f }
\repeat percent 2 { c2 d }
\repeat percent 2 { c1 }

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\repeat percent 3 { c4 d e f | c2 g' }

[image of music]

Patterns that are shorter than one measure but contain mixed durations use a double-percent symbol.

\repeat percent 4 { c8. <d f>16 }
\repeat percent 2 { \tuplet 3/2 { r8 c d } e4 }

[image of music]

Selected Snippets

Percent repeat counter

Measure repeats of more than two repeats can get a counter when the convenient property is switched, as shown in this example:

\relative c'' {
  \set countPercentRepeats = ##t
  \repeat percent 4 { c1 }
}

[image of music]

Percent repeat count visibility

Percent repeat counters can be shown at regular intervals by setting the context property repeatCountVisibility.

\relative c'' {
  \set countPercentRepeats = ##t
  \set repeatCountVisibility = #(every-nth-repeat-count-visible 5)
  \repeat percent 10 { c1 } \break
  \set repeatCountVisibility = #(every-nth-repeat-count-visible 2)
  \repeat percent 6 { c1 d1 }
}

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Isolated percent repeats

Isolated percents can also be printed.

makePercent =
#(define-music-function (parser location note) (ly:music?)
   "Make a percent repeat the same length as NOTE."
   (make-music 'PercentEvent
               'length (ly:music-length note)))

\relative c'' {
  \makePercent s1
}

[image of music]

See also

Music Glossary: percent repeat, simile.

Snippets: Repeats.

Internals Reference: RepeatSlash, RepeatSlashEvent, DoubleRepeatSlash, PercentRepeat, PercentRepeatCounter, PercentRepeatedMusic, Percent_repeat_engraver, DoublePercentEvent, DoublePercentRepeat, DoublePercentRepeatCounter, Double_percent_repeat_engraver, Slash_repeat_engraver.


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:

\repeat tremolo 8 { c16 d }
\repeat tremolo 6 { c16 d }
\repeat tremolo 2 { c16 d }

[image of music]

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:

c2:8 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
      }
    }
  }
>>

[image of music]

See also

Snippets: Repeats.


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