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Next UK ABRSM theory exams
Wednesday 28th February

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Grade Two Music Theory Lesson 1: Notes, Rests and Ledger Lines

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Notes and Rests in Music

In the Grade One music theory course, we learnt about the most common note and rest values, and we also learnt that if a note or rest is dotted (has one dot on the right side of the note head), its length is increased by half again.



The semibreve (whole) rest is also used a full bar rest in any time signature. It represents one bar of silence, whatever the time signature is.


Ties in Music

We also learnt that we can use ties to join notes of the same pitch together to make them longer. (Don't confuse ties with slurs - ties join together two notes which are the same pitch!)


Ledger Lines

We met middle C in the both the treble clef

Middle C, treble clef - music theory

and bass clef

Middle C, bass clef - music theory

and found out that the little line that goes through the middle of the note is called a ledger line, and that it makes extra room on the stave for us to use. 

We can add more ledger lines to make more space on the stave. We can add ledger lines to the top of the stave, and to the bottom. 

Let's add some ledger lines to the top of the staff in the treble clef


The first note we use a ledger line on is the A.


Let's now add them to the bottom:


To the top of the bass clef:


and to the bottom:



In Grade Two Music Theory (ABRSM and Trinity), you will need to be able to read notes written with up to 2 ledger lines.




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