Black-Oval Twinline
by Paul Morris, 2006

Chromatic scale from C to C in Black-Oval Twinline by Paul MorrisC C#/Db D D#/Eb E F F#/Gb G G#/Ab A A#/Ab B C

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This is Morris’ variation on Reed’s Twinline. It uses hollow triangle notes and solid oval notes. As with DeVries’ Chromatic and Keislar’s Black-Triangle variants, this emphasizes the 6-6 pitch pattern and makes it easier to distinguish the two types of notes. When writing by hand the ovals can optionally be left hollow, making them easier to write. It has an optional companion notation: Expanded Black-Oval Twinline.

Compared to Keislar’s Black-Triangle Twinline, it has a slightly stronger 6-6 pitch pattern since the solid ovals have a more consistent appearance (rather than hollow ovals that sometimes have a line visible through them). This also provides a less “busy” appearance overall, and opens up more possibilities for using alterations to the notehead as an alternative accidental system. (Small dots inside the notehead, for example.)

Having solid ovals also gives quarter notes, eighth notes, sixteenth notes, etc… a more consistent appearance when switching back and forth from traditional notation. Any note with a stem and a solid oval notehead will mean the same thing in both systems. Since these notes are generally more numerous than half notes or whole notes, this is arguably another advantage over Black-Triangle Twinline. A double stem is used to indicate half notes and to mark their difference from quarter notes. See Using Notehead Color for Pitch. Otherwise traditional rhythmic notation is used.

Source: Paul Morris, 2006. (The notehead color makes this system quite similar to Sotorrio’s Bilinear Notation. Bilinear pre-dates this system, which was however designed without prior knowledge of Bilinear. Some differences include the rhythmic notation of whole notes and half notes, and the precise shape of the triangular noteheads.) (This system was briefly named “TwinNote” between June and December of 2009, before Morris introduced his newer, preferred version of TwinNote. It was also known as “White-Triangle Twinline” before being renamed to “Black-Oval Twinline” in February of 2011 in order to better distinguish it from Tom Reed’s Twinline (which also has white triangles).)

Similar Notations: Clairnote DN by Paul Morris

Manuscript paper: Discontinuous Staves Continuous Staves

Webpage: on the Music Notation Project Wiki