C Van der Horst Octatonic Scale on the Piano - Improvisation and Composition

Notes: C, Db, Eb, F, Gb, G, A, and B - Key: C - Origin: Dutch - Category: Nonatonic or Ennatonic Scales

The C Van der Horst Octatonic uses nine notes per octave. Because of this same reason it is a member of the so called Nonatonic or Ennatonic -scales that have Nine-note (or Nine-tone). On the piano keyboard, it is made up of three black keys: Db, Eb, and Gb and five white keys: C, F, G, A, and B. This combination makes this scale - as well as the C Prometheus, C Prometheus Liszt, and C Prometheus Neapolitan - as great choices for composing or improvising Dutch music.

If we take a look a the key signature of the C Van der Horst Octatonic Scale we can find it has three flats and no sharps. Therefore, on sheet music you will find three accidentals on the score. The notes of this scale are: C, Db, Eb, F, Gb, G, A, and B.

How to play the C Van der Horst Octatonic scale?

  1. 1
    To play the C Van der Horst Octatonic on your piano, start on the Root note. Play C, the first note of the scale.
  2. 2
    Continue with rest of the notes that shape the scale, play Db, Eb, F, Gb, G, A, and B.
  3. 3
    Return to the home of the C Van der Horst Octatonic scale. Play again C -the tonic of the scale- to mark its ending.

How to play the scale in descending fashion?

  1. 1
    Begin on the last note. Play the C, the last (and first) note of the scale.
  2. 2
    Go down. Play B, A, G, Gb, F, Eb, and Db.
  3. 3
    Reach the home again. Establish tonality by playing the tonic of the C Van der Horst Octatonic scale: C.
  4. 4
    Tip. If you want to learn how to improvise or compose your own music using the C Van der Horst Octatonic scale or any other scale, check out our piano improvisation and composition lessons and enjoy thousands of interactive multimedia piano animations.
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