Changes to this document that reflect recent updates to RDA are in process but are not complete
|Medium of performance is the instrument, instruments, voice, voices, etc., for which a musical work was originally conceived.
Instrumental music: one performer to a part | Individual instruments | Accompanying ensembles with one performer to a part | Music for orchestra, string orchestra, or band | One or more solo instruments and accompanying ensemble | Vocal music: | Solo voices | Choruses | Accompaniment for songs, Lieder, etc. | Indeterminate/unspecified medium
|(22.214.171.124) Sources of information|
|Take information on medium of performance from any source.|
|(126.96.36.199) Recording medium of performance|
Record the medium of performance by applying these instructions, as applicable:
Record medium of performance as a separate element, as part of an access point, or as both. For instructions on recording medium of performance as part of the authorized access point, 188.8.131.52-184.108.40.206.
If there is more than one part for a particular instrument or voice, record the number of parts.
Use continuo for a thorough bass part whether it is named as basso, basso continuo, figured bass, thorough bass, or continuo, and whether the individual instrument or instruments of the continuo are specified or not.
For guidelines on recording details about the medium of performance, apply the instructions for medium of performance of musical content at 7.21.
Best practices for music cataloging: If giving the medium of performance as a component of an access point, routinely also give medium of performance in a 382 field. For other works, give medium of performance in a 382 field if readily ascertainable.
|(220.127.116.11) Instrumental music intended for one performer to a part|
|Record each instrument by applying the instructions at 18.104.22.168 and 22.214.171.124
° If there is more than one percussion instrument, and the names of the individual instruments are not specified by the composer in the original title, use percussion.
° If the medium includes a continuo part, record the name of the part (126.96.36.199)
° If the medium includes instruments acting as an accompanying ensemble, record a term for the accompanying ensemble (188.8.131.52)
|When recording an individual type of instrument, use a term in a language preferred by the agency creating the data whenever possible.
LC-PCC PS: Use a term in English whenever possible.
Best practices for music cataloging: Follow LC-PCC PS
Descriptive Cataloging Manual (DCM) Z1, 382, Medium of performance: Best practice: Record the medium of performance using RDA terminology when available.
If a required term is not listed in RDA, use a term from a controlled vocabulary, such as LCSH.
Use the following list of terms as a guide:
LC-PCC PS: LC practice: In applying RDA 184.108.40.206, if a composer wrote works for or including various keyboard stringed instruments such as harpsichord, piano, or clavichord, use the one that predominates in the composer's works of a given type of composition in all preferred titles for works of that type. If no predominant instrument is apparent, use the term "keyboard instrument" in the medium of performance element.
220.127.116.11.1: Number of hands:
For one instrument, specify the number of hands if other than two:
piano, 1 hand
piano, 3 hands
keyboard instrument, 4 hands
marimba, 8 hands
For two or more keyboard or mallet (marimba, vibraphone, xylophone, etc.) instruments, specify the number of hands if other than two per instrument.
18.104.22.168.2: Pitch and range of instruments :
If considered important for identification and access, record the designation of key in which an instrument is pitched and/or terms indicating the range of an instrument.
° a) the designation of the key in which an instrument is pitched
° b) terms indicating a range alto, tenor, bass, etc.
» Best practices for music cataloging: If deemed useful for identification and access, give specific ranges of instruments, etc. in a note
22.214.171.124.3: Alternative instruments:
Record the names of alternative instruments.
126.96.36.199.4: Doubling instruments:
Record the names of doubling instruments.
° Omit doubling instruments.
|(188.8.131.52) Accompanying ensembles with one performer to a part|
|For an accompanying ensemble with one performer to a part, record the appropriate term for the instrument or family of instruments followed by the word ensemble|
|The ensemble consists of:||Record:|
|the same instrument or from the same family of instruments||record the appropriate term for the instrument or family of instruments followed by the word ensemble
° guitar ensemble, string ensemble
|instruments from two or more families of instruments||instrumental ensemble when a more specific term is not available|
|Alternative: For an accompanying ensemble with one performer to a part, record the appropriate term for each instrument of the accompanying ensemble instead of the name of the ensemble.|
|(184.108.40.206) Instrumental music for orchestra, string orchestra, or band|
|Record an appropriate term from the following list:
° orchestra (use for both full or reduced (chamber) orchestra)
° string orchestra
Don't list the individual instruments.
Disregard continuo when it is part of an orchestra or string orchestra.
The Library of Congress Medium of Performance Thesaurus for Music (LCMPT) gives scope notes for "orchestra" and "string orchestra":
|(220.127.116.11) One or more solo instruments and accompanying ensemble|
|Record the term for the solo instrument or instruments and the term for the accompanying ensemble, in that order.
° For the solo instrument(s), follow 18.104.22.168-22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199
° For the accompanying ensemble, see 188.8.131.52-184.108.40.206
LC-PCC PS: For an accompanying ensemble that has only one performer to a part, use the word "ensemble" preceded by the appropriate qualifying term (e.g., "string ensemble," "jazz ensemble," "wind ensemble") in the part of the medium of performance element that follows the solo instruments.
|(220.127.116.11) Solo voices|
Record an appropriate term from the following list to identify a type of solo voice:
If no specific voice types or ranges can be ascertained for two or more solo voices of different ranges, record an appropriate term from the following list:
For compositions that include solo voice(s) with chorus, record only the appropriate terms for the chorus (18.104.22.168) and the accompaniment, if any.
|Record an appropriate term from the following list to identify a type of choral ensemble (two or more performers to a part):
° mixed voices
° women's voices
° men's voices
° unison voices
° other terms as appropriate (e.g., children's voices)
» Best practices for music cataloging: other commonly used terms: equal voices, treble voices
|(22.214.171.124) Accompaniment for songs, Lieder, etc.|
RDA doesn't cover what to do when the voice and instruments are equal in the ensemble. Current practice is to name all the instruments (following 126.96.36.199 to 188.8.131.52) but don't add the word accompaniment.
If such a work is not accompanied, record unaccompanied.
|(184.108.40.206) Indeterminate medium of performance|
|If the specific medium of performance, or any part of it, is not stated in the resource or other source, record that part of the medium of performance as follows, in this order of priority:|