New answers tagged temperament
A good reason for an orchestra to be slightly sharp is that it will produce a different sound. Not because there is anything special about the frequency 442, but simply because listeners are used to hearing concert pitch everywhere. Although most people do not have absolute pitch in that they can tell that a given orchestra is sharp by a few cents, they can ...
My Mother has played in an orchestra all her life and has always tuned to 442 Hz. The reason for this is as music played at a slightly higher pitch resonates better than at standard tuning. Thus giving it a better sound.
I am surprised nobody mentioned baroque orchestras yet. They use the tuning used at the time of the composer. The Orchestra of the 18th Century tunes to (IIRC) A = 430. The French orchestras played at 392, a few centuries ago (I'll look up when). I don't know why though. I'll look that up too.
Clarinetists really suffer when the orchestra tunes high. Once the barrel is all the way in, the only way to increase the pitch further is with the lip. Even if a short barrel is to hand, all the woodwinds are set up to be in tune at one length and any variation from that also requires the players to constantly adjust their pitch - if you pitch higher, the ...
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