Create a Tuplet of Any Ratio in Sibelius

Q: How can I get Sibelius to create 16th septuplets in a bar of  6/8 without the duration dots?


A: It’s a great question. By default, if you select a 16th note or rest on the downbeat in 6/8 time and create a default septuplet (CNTRL-7 Windows or CMND-7 Mac), you end up with an extra 8th rest:


This is because Sibelius is interpreting the default septuplet request as 7 sixteenths in the space of 4 sixteenths (2 eighths). However, for the above case, it should actually be 7 sixteenths in the space of 6 sixteenths.

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If 6 was 9 : Measured Tremolo & Tuplet Rhythms in Sibelius

Measured tremolo is a specific repetition of notes per beat measured exactly in a given tempo. It’s a type of notation shorthand which takes up less space than writing all the notes out, commonly found in published classical works.

It’s common practice to write out the full notation of the first beat or bar of a measured tremolo passage to avoid confusion:


In her book “Behind Bars”, Elaine Gould also recommends adding the label “non trem.” to the first note value of the abbreviation.

You can apply these in either duple or triple meter, with the added benefit that Sibelius plays these back as if they were written out in long form, (which will help you to check your work).

One case where the “how to” is not quite as obvious, however, are tuplets that are represented by measured tremolo. For instance, in 2/4 time, how would you create:


Let’s take a look…

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Sibelius Mass Edit Filtering – Change Triplets into Sextuplets

I frequently receive scores where tuplets are subdivided more than necessary for the time signature, like this passage in 2/4 time:


It would be great if there was a way to convert the full bars of triplets into sextuplets. There is a plugin in Sibelius called “Split or Join Tuplets” but this plugin is designed to split or join a single tuplet, not a whole passage of them.

However, I recently learned a cool edit filtering trick from Sibelius power user Wim Hoogewerf that allows you to convert an extended passage of triplets to sextuplets. I thought I would share it with you. Check this out:

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