I am reading a piece of music (Aurora's Theme transcribed by Tigero) for the piano and a part of the music sheet has me completely stumped:

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It appears that the B and E (surrounding the middle C) should be played twice, in succession for the bass while holding these same notes for the treble. How is that possible? Are the notes supposed to be played in different octaves?

  • I'm assuming you already double checked that neither hand is played an octave up or down? I've seen overlapping notes notated before but not like this. Are there sustain pedal marks that are not shown? Was the piece originally for an ensemble and has been maybe automatically transcribed? Jun 22, 2015 at 19:54
  • It's an impossible thing to play as writ.
    – Tim
    Jun 22, 2015 at 20:07
  • Great questions @ToddWilcox. The piece was intended for an ensemble. I can't seem to find any sustain pedal marks. I have no idea about playing either hand up or down an octave but it does not sound right when I try to attempt that. Here is the original sheet if it can provide any more help: ichigos.com/res/…
    – KJ Price
    Jun 22, 2015 at 20:10

1 Answer 1


Use the sustain pedal and get the right hand out of the way. Alternately, you could make the executive decision to drop the B and E in the right hand; given that those pitches are already present in the left hand and will be coming in immediately on the next eighth note, this would be an almost unnoticeable change.

  • 1
    I have been reluctant to buy a sustain pedal for my keyboard but it looks like it is about time. Furthermore, I am going to start looking for another transcription of this piece. Thanks for this answer!
    – KJ Price
    Jun 22, 2015 at 20:21
  • The sustain pedal is really an essential tool. I don't know this piece but I think there's an implication that you should grab the first low chord in the LH with the pedal and sustain it through the bar.
    – MattPutnam
    Jun 22, 2015 at 21:15
  • +1 for executive decisions. Especially with reductions, these are vital. And I agree that a sustain pedal is a must for anything after Beethoven, and probably expected so that the bass chord gets held.
    – Josiah
    Jun 22, 2015 at 22:03

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