enter image description here

What does the small diagonal line between the two notes mean?

  • 3
    Please show that bar and the ones either side. – Tim Nov 1 '17 at 9:11
  • Whose Ballade? – Carl Witthoft Nov 1 '17 at 12:20
  • Even if the answer is it means a misprint, it's still a reasonable question. How can it be unclear? – Tim Nov 1 '17 at 13:02
  • 1
    @Tim it's unclear because of the lack of context & identification. Heck, I found a "Ballade in G minor" for percussion and winds! – Carl Witthoft Nov 1 '17 at 15:06
  • by the way you can accept an answer, if it answered your question ;-) – nath Dec 25 '17 at 17:11

THe OP leave us guessing where this came from, but assuming it is Chopin's ballade in G minor Op 23, it is simply a "chord" consisting of B flat and B natural.

The 19th-century notation for this was just two notes on the same stem, with two accidentals (flat and natural) in front of them. In the 20th century some composers started using two separate notes joined by a "forked" stem. The OP's graphic looks like a poor attempt to reproduce this with an (unknown) notation software application that can't do it right - or the user didn't know any better.

Klindworth's edition (1880): (note the horrible 5:3 tuplet notation with the tiny slur over the 5!) enter image description here

Breitkopf und Härtel (1878) has staccato dots over the notes, which somebody may have mistaken for the slanting line:

enter image description here

More modern notations:

enter image description here

| improve this answer | |
  • Nice detective work. Given that the original slant bar doesn't even show up in Dolmetsch's list, this looks like a good interpretation. – Carl Witthoft Nov 1 '17 at 15:05
  • Sorry for the late reply and thanks for the answer. And yes, it is Chopin's Ballade. – soap Nov 2 '17 at 1:03

Looks like a slide. You can't do that on a piano, but you can emulate smearing from B natural to B flat (which I presume this notation is supposed to suggest) by striking both right after another and releasing the B natural after striking the B flat and then release the B flat "regularly" on time.

Probably intended to render a "blue note".

| improve this answer | |
  • Normally the first note will be written as a grace note, smaller than the ordinary dot. – Tim Nov 1 '17 at 10:49
  • -1. This is Chopin, not 20th century notation! – user19146 Nov 1 '17 at 12:20
  • @alephzero you sure about that? I don't see that note pair in an IMSLP copy. – Carl Witthoft Nov 1 '17 at 12:28
  • I don't see a match in the Grieg either... – Carl Witthoft Nov 1 '17 at 12:33
  • @CarlWitthoft See my answer, when I've finished writing it! – user19146 Nov 1 '17 at 12:34

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