Control Multirest Break Points in Sibelius

Q: I’m trying to import a graphic onto my score, but whenever I place it where I want it, the multi-measure rest breaks in a way I don’t want it to. How can I place the graphic above the staff and keep the  multi-measure rest at the full duration?

A: From version 2 of Sibelius onward, the Properties Palette has provided a good solution for  controlling placement while keeping multimeasure rest integrity. In Sibelius 7, the Properties Palette was renamed “The Inspector”, but for all intents and purposes, it is still the same tool.

Suppose you want a graphic to appear in the score and parts at a location prior to the barline, over the multirest:

more >>

(2) Comments

Create Custom Repeat Dots On 2 Line Staves in Sibelius 7 or Sibelius 6

Q: In Sibelius (v.6 and now v.7) with a “Percussion [2 lines]” instrument, I want to make repeat signs that appear in between the two lines. My two alternatives so far, are (1) ‘percussion-style’ repeat signs, with one dot above the top staff line and one dot below the lower staff line; and (2) conventional repeat signs on two 1-line staves, which gives two separate sets of repeats, e.g. not combined as one repeat sign between the two staff lines).

A solution to this problem would be useful to many music educators, who often present introductory music in fewer than five-line staffs, but want to acquaint students with the conventional symbols like repeat signs.

A: In Finale, moving the repeat dot locations is a simple matter of adjusting the vertical location for available “Top Repeat Dot” and “Bottom Repeat Dot” parameters in Staff Setup. However, while the method to achieve this in Sibelius is somewhat more circuitous, it is indeed quite possible, and in fact, once you’ve created the mechanism once, it is very fast to create in subsequent worksheets or even scores, via Export / Import House Style.

more >>

(2) Comments


Proofreading is an essential part of music preparation, whether it’s engraving for publication, a recording session, or for performance.

It’s more than merely having an eye for detail. Good proofreading really boils down to having an efficient and methodical / systematic approach which allows every aspect of the music on every page to be examined  consistently and thoroughly.

I recommend the method advocated by William Holab and David Fetheroff in “The G. Schirmer/AMP Manual of Style and Usage” as a great starting point. Once you’ve learned how it works, you may modify the process somewhat, as I have, but the gist is, you want to specifically target groups of musical elements one at a time in a methodical manner to produce consistent and accurate results.

In the G. Schirmer system, the proofreader prints out a copy of the score or part and pencils the following letters at the top of the page, crossing each letter off as that task is complete:

more >>

(4) Comments

Auto Note / Stem Side Articulation Placement in Finale

Articulations are small symbols which which are normally placed near the notehead to indicate how a note is to be played.

However, when music appears in more than one Voice or Layer, the placement rules change. Earlier versions of Finale required a lot of manual adjustment to make articulations appear in the right place where there were multiple Layers. In current versions of FInale, users can take advantage of a positioning feature for articulations called “Auto Note / Stem Side”:

use for: accent, accent-staccato, accent-tenuto, marcatissimo, marcato accent (rooftop) marcato staccato, staccato and tenuto (sostenuto).

1 Comment

Show Active Layer Only : What You See Is What You Edit in Finale

In Finale, sometimes it is desirable to copy only the material from one Layer (e.g. voice) to another location. However, while you can use use the settings in Edit > Edit Filter to control which elements are copied, all Filter settings apply to all visible Layers. But Finale has a very powerful feature hidden in the Document menu : “Show Active Layer Only”.

All you have to remember to use this feature is “If you don’t see it, it won’t get copied”. So, to copy only the music from Layer 2 onto the clipboard, make Layer 2 active, then select “Show Active Layer Only”.

Keep in mind that you can use this in connection with your settings in the Edit Filter to get very precise control of what gets copied to the Clipboard, for instance, copy just articulations attached to Layer 2…

would you like to comment?

Quick tip : Slur / Phrase Mark Entry in Finale 2012 / 2011

In Finale, with the slur tool selected, double click on the start note of the slur, but don’t release the mouse after the second click (down, up, down). Instead, drag the slur right to extend it. As it passes each subsequent note, it becomes highlighted, indicating that the slur will “snap” to that note. If you release the mouse while you see the highlight, the slur will be properly attached to the desired destination note.

While this technique will also work across systems, or even pages, it’s sometimes easier to enter phrase marks using Scroll View, since everything is linear in this view.

would you like to comment?

Articulation Alternatives for Staggered Bowing in Finale and Sibelius

Bowings are a type of symbol used in music notation to indicate the use of the bow in string parts, which indicate the manner in which a note should be played. Finale and Sibelius share a standard way to create these; they treat bowings as articulations, which are automatically positioned in proximity to the notehead.

more >>

(5) Comments