How Should I Build A Basic VSL Timpani Map?

I want to build a basic Timpani map for VSL Timpani.

Just to get things started so it’s easier to test functionality, here’s the parameters I want to deal with:

  1. Basic Hit Types: Single, Secco, and Roll.
  2. Ranges: Two separate ranges, each with it’s own A/B switch options
  3. A/B Switches: Binary alternatives that affect what hands are used for the hits

For each Hit Type I need to:
1. specify the hit type
–I’ve created custom Playing Techniques tied to custom Playback PT’s for each, so I’ve already created a working ExMap for each of the three hit types. But in addition I need to…

2. specify the note input range limits, which will determine what A/B switch will do.
– Range A#0 to C3 - switch A = LH hit, B = alternate hits between LH and RH (this is not a roll, it is an alternation in the patch played each time it is called on).
– Range A#3 to C6 - only switch A is available, and it is RH hit only.

3. specify the switch, A or B

As a possible reference I checked the HSO Timpani ExMap, but it was too simple to be a guide for this situation.

The first decision I need to make is whether to employ an ExMap or a PercMap. I’m inclined toward an ExMap because I’m familiar with them and unfamiliar with Perc Maps. Besides, I’m not sure a Percussion Map is appropriate for pitched percussion.

If I do use an ExMap, I will also need to figure out how to specify (limit) the range of note inputs for each entry, something I haven’t done before. Also I’ll need to tackle the use of Base and Conditions now available in D3.5, so as to mix and match the three sets of parameters.

Once I have this basic setup working, then I will move into additional parameters like different mallet types.

I’m wide open to any help or advice.

Well here’s how it turns out.

It looks to me like the VSL Timpani instrument was designed for playing left and right hand using separate ranges. If you are sitting at a keyboard, the lower range you would play with your left hand, sounding as noted. The higher range you would play with your right hand, notated three octaves higher but with patches that sound at the same range as the lower one. I guess this makes playing a line more natural for some.

The A Switch is designed to use this method, but the B Switch allows the user to let the notes automatically alternate between left and right using only the lower range.

The problem for Dorico, so far as I can tell, is that it will not pass through the MIDI notes in the right hand (higher) range of the VSL instrument, presumably because it is out range (?). I guess the only way to implement this would be to set up separate instruments in both VSL and Dorico and have VI Pro transpose up 3 octaves in one of them. For my purposes it’s not worth the trouble. Since I’m using notation, there is no use for playing with two hands.

So I have created two sets of playing techniques for each of the three hit types. Both use the lower only range, one for non-alternating hits (A Switch) and the other for alternating hits ( (B) switch.

Basically, much ado about nothing. I don’t need to concern myself with implementing the two ranges.

To quote the line from Star Wars, “Move along, nothing to see here.” I only rehearse the matter in case someone else runs into the issue.