Other Staff Symbols
1. Note Heads and Stem DirectionNote_Heads_and_Stem_Direction.html
3. Applying AccidentalsApplying_Accidentals.html
2. BarringBarring.html
5. Rhythm Slashes and the Drum SetRhythm_Slashes_and_the_Drum_Set.html
6. More on Time SignaturesMore_on_Time_Signatures.html
8. ArticulationArticulation.html
9. DynamicsDynamics.html
4. EnharmonicsEnharmonics.html
10. OrnamentsOrnaments.html
11. Writing StylesWriting_Styles.html

If you’ve read the sections on Basics, Scales, Chords, and the previous articles in Notation Skills, then you’re already familiar with most of the staff and the symbols musicians can use to describe sound. The rest are listed in this and the following 3 articles; Articulation, Dynamics, and Ornaments.


There are many forms of repeat symbols. The simplest would be the SINGLE MEASURE REPEAT.

We can then have DOUBLE measure repeats.

If we want a whole section to repeat - whether it be 4 bars or 16 bars - we can use REPEAT BRACKETS.

We also have a way of indicating we only want a certain section repeated, using REPEAT ENDINGS.

We’re able to use the repeat brackets to repeat an isolated piece of a section;

Both of these 2 Bar phrases sound the same, but the example above utilizes the repeat symbol.
Again, both of these phrases sound the same, but the example above utilizes the repeat previous 2 Bars symbol.
This signifies to repeat the first 4 bars, and then continue down to bar 5.
When you get the this point (end of bar 6), go back to bar 3 and play to the end of bar 8.

These two sections are the exact same by sound, but the top example uses the repeat endings to condense the notation.

Da Capo

Dal Segno

Translates to “To the head.” Literally means go to the beginning. Will be abbreviated with “D.C.”, and then will have a “Al Coda” or “Al Fine” sign.

Once you get to the D.C. Al Coda sign, you go to the first bar, until you get to the first coda symbol, which indicates you then skip to the Coda, which is the end.
same thing
In this example, after getting to the “D.C. Al Fine,” we must return to the beginning, and then play to the note underneath the Fine sign.
“Fine” translates to final.
More on Time SignaturesMore_on_Time_Signatures.html

Abbreviated with “D.S.” D.S. Al Coda directs the player to go to the SEGNO symbol (Segno translates to “the sign”). The “Al Coda” tells the player to go to the Coda section after playing through the piece once (arriving at the Coda sign for the second time).

Dal Segno Al Fine

When you hit the D.S. Al Coda, go directly to the Segno sign. Play up to the Coda sign and skip to the Coda (the end of the piece.
(End of the piece)
After getting to the D.S. Al Fine, go to the Segno and play up to the Fine.  The last note played is directly underneath the Fine.


Single barline

Double barline

Double heavy barline

Used for ending measures.

Used for ending sections of a piece.

Double barlines should be used in between changes of time signature AND key signature.

Used for ending entire songs, or movements.

(End Section)
Ending 1.
Ending 2.