I found this on a piano score I was reading recently.The stream of notes is smaller than the rest of the notes in the staff. It also has that weird line accross it, like a grace note or acciacatura. Not sure how it's called.

Would appreciate any wisdom on this!

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  • Please add the title and composer to help others find this question.
    – Aaron
    Mar 26, 2023 at 22:57

2 Answers 2


It's multiple grace notes. The entire arpeggio is played rapidly as a lead-in to the primary note, the high C.


It's a string of grace notes. To be played freely (but probably quite rapidly) as a lead-in to the main note.

The slash on the first note is a quirk of the notation program (Sibelius?). There are two main types of grace note, the Acciaccatura, sometimes called 'crushed note', a short note fitted in just before the main note, and the Appoggiatura ('leaning note') that takes half the value of the main note. A single Acciaccatura is notated with a slash, an Appoggiatura is just notated small-sized. To get correct playback (in Sibelius at any rate) this sort of thing needs to be notated as Acciaccaturas, but there's no way of stopping Sibelius putting the slash on the first one. I've checked Gould and other resources and find no mention of the slash being required in these circumstances.

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