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Solutions for Act IV Scene 1 - Between The Lines

Kicking off our music day is a puzzle which looks like a plain piece of sheet music. As clued by the title, we need to "read between the lines" - but how do we read this score?

We may start by transcribing each note as one of ABCDEFG to get the following (replacing rests with question marks):

??AGE ??A?DA?D ?F?E? E?E?C??ED ?? D?G??A? CA?E?A?
BA?D ???D?CED DA?C??G ??EE? A?D A?DA??E A?DA??E
D??EA?E GE?E?A???G ??C??BE ?? BAC?E??A
DA?B?EA?
C?E??B?A?D ??ECE CA? BE E?E?A?ED
B???E?A?D ?? A?E??E EG ABBE?

As strange as it may seem, all of these look like they could form words! For instance, BE is a two letter word on its own, there are no contradictory letter groupings and the appearances of "-ED" hint at a few past tense words.

We suspect that each rest is to be replaced by a letter, but we can go a step further than that. Since the A-Gs are scored, the rests must represent the remaining letters, from H-Z. This eliminates a few possibilities, such as ADAGE for the first word.

Trying to find common words that fit reveals that many of the words are in fact unique, e.g. DA?B?EA? will only fit DAYBREAK. Fitting these words in, and keeping an eye out for possibilities, gives:

IMAGE/STAGE/USAGE STANDARD OFTEN EXERCISED ?? DIGITAL CAMERAS/CAVEMAN
BA?D PRODUCED DANCING ??EE? AND/AID ANDANTE ANDANTE
DISEASE GENERATING MICROBE ?? BACTERIA
DAYBREAK
CHESSBOARD NIECE/PIECE CA? BE ELEVATED
BOULEVARD ?? A?E??E EG ABBEY

Using a bit of context, we can tidy up the clues a bit and get:

IMAGE STANDARD OFTEN EXERCISED IN DIGITAL CAMERAS
BAND PRODUCED DANCING QUEEN AND ANDANTE ANDANTE
DISEASE GENERATING MICROBE OR BACTERIA
DAYBREAK
CHESSBOARD PIECE CAN BE ELEVATED
BOULEVARD OR AVENUE EG ABBEY

If we note that the time signature at the bottom reads 4/4 and that there are 6 blank bars, it would seem that we want six 4-letter answers. In order, they are:

JPEG, ABBA, GERM
DAWN, PAWN, ROAD

Enciphering these words into the blank bars produces:

This is a picture of a fermata, a musical symbol used to indicate that a note should be sustained for longer than indicated.


Design notes:

Due to the restrictions of the puzzle and a desire for a symmetric arch, the word JPEG had to be chosen. Luckily, although TIFF is a less-fitting possibility for the same clue, it enciphers to give almost the same result.

The answer is: fermata