col legno tratto » Special playing styles - Philipp Dangas

col legno tratto

Description and application of the playing technique col legno tratto

Col legno (i.e. with the wood of the bow) = the strings are struck or vibrated with the bow stick. By striking (battuto) or painting (tratto) as in this example. The struck col legno is fundamentally comparable to the vibrational excitation of the pizzicato.

As a rule, the bowed note is weaker in terms of its dynamic effect than that of the pizzicato. It is therefore particularly suitable for mysterious, bizarre, crackling effects, and above all for effects of a rhythmic nature.

The bow [string instruments]
Designations of the parts of an bow
Name Description
Stick Long wooden stick
Hair Covering of the pole
Winding Wire winding
Eye Decoration made of mother-of-pearl
Frog Holding the hairs
Screw Twist grip
The violin parts

col legno tratto as part of the „symphonic world music“

The special way of playing col legno tratto should always be used when the exact intonation is of secondary importance. If the overall character of the sentence should sound unclear and blurred. Such as after a crescendi before a morendo or after a climax.

Key data on the special variety col legno tratto

Italian: col legno tratto
Deutsch: mit dem Holz geschlagen
The back of the bow strikes the strings.
Short, dry, percussive sounding with indistinct pitches.
Prescribed by indication above the system.

Downloads for the col legno tratto - score by Gustav Mahler

Sound file for the score "1st Symphony 3rd movement" Download-size: 194 Kilobytes
PDF file for the score "1st Symphony 3rd movement"
Download–size: 99.2 Kilobytes

Note on the score with an example on the col legno tratto

Two graphics with a score excerpt follow. Excerpt from the prelude to the “First Symphony, III.Movement”. Composition by Gustav Mahler. An example of the col legno tratto. The graphics can also be enlarged. They are Link-Sensitive [Clickable].

1/2.Example for col legno