Finale : Using Linked Parts, Finalescript & House Styles for Commercial Parts

Back in 2011, I posted Making Efficient Use of Linked Parts In Finale which outlined a few of the advantages of using Linked Parts in Finale vs. the “old school” method of individual part extraction, or pasting parts into a separate template file.

Recently, a conversation with an industry colleague made me realize that even 6 years after the introduction of Linked Parts in Finale, some of the very best veteran professional music copyists working in LA and elsewhere still are not taking advantage of Finale’s Managed Parts feature.

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Music by the Pound : Types & Weights of Paper for Printing Music

As a generation producing music notation on computer software and laser printers, we are fortunate not to have to consider as many factors when picking out a paper for music reproduction. For instance, there are no concerns about how the ink from a fountain pen spreads on a specific paper; or whether or not fibers from the paper get caught in the pen when copying.

These days, most good quality papers designed for laser printers or photo copying produce great results for typeset scores and parts. With white paper, we want to pick a paper stock with a good brightness rating (the higher the number, the brighter the paper). And, importantly, we want a paper that is heavy enough that it won’t curl up on the music stands, but that isn’t too heavy to go through our printer.

If you have the manual for your printer handy, it’s worth checking to see what the heaviest recommended paper is possible to feed through the trays.

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Printing Two Separate Parts Side By Side As Matched Pairs of Pages

Q: I’m preparing a score in Finale 2011 for a piano ensemble, i.e. for two pianists playing simultaneously at one piano. How can I print the score so that the 1st and 2nd parts are printed on even and odd pages correspondingly?

A: Finale doesn’t have a specific feature to do this. However, it is possible to print individual pages in such a way that everything is sequential, as well as in matched pairs. There are just a few things to keep in mind:

  1. Match the layouts in two separate parts so that the starting and ending bar numbering for each pair of pages will be consistent between the two parts.
  2. Hide the page numbers in the Finale file, since these will not be correct when you line the pages up side by side. Right click the page numbers, and uncheck “Show”.
  3. Print the individual parts and tape the pages together in pairs so that Piano 1 and Piano 2 pages line up correctly. As mentioned above in #1, the bar numbering and layout for each part should match at the start and end of every page.


Using a PDF editing program such as Acrobat Pro, you can combine the pages in proper order after the fact. Save each page of each of the two parts as separate PDF files, then combine the files to assemble them in order: Piano 1, page 1, Piano 2, page 1, Piano 1, page 2, Piano2, page 2 etc.

Once the file is assembled linearly, you can optionally add page numbers to the assembled PDF file, as well as use any of the normal features supported by your printer to create a booklet etc.

Finally, add a title page the front cover, then start the Piano 1 part on a left facing page (even numbered) rather than the standard right facing page (odd numbered) in order that pairs of pages will always be displayed as you open out the printed booklet.


It should be noted that another, perhaps more standard approach would be to create a part which is 4 staves, with piano 1 and piano 2 vertically aligned; essentially a “mini-score”. If your score is 2 pianos only, you can do the layout right in the score. If the two pianos are parts in a larger score, from Managed Parts, create a single part which contains both instruments by selecting the Piano 1 Instrument in the left column of Managed Parts, then selecting Piano 2 in the right column, and selecting “Add to Instrument” so that it shows up in the “Staves and Groups in Part” center column under Piano 1. Finally, select “Edit Part Name” and rename to “Piano 1 & 2”.

That’s it!

related : Piano Music for Four Hands in Sibelius 

Accessing The Print Button in the Sibelius 7 Print Dialog

Q: The Sibelius 7 print dialog box apparently does not recognize Return as equivalent to clicking on the Print icon. It would be nice if it did.

A: As you may have discovered, Sibelius 7 has redesigned the Print Dialog of Sibelius 7, essentially completely replacing the OS interface for printing. As a result, things look and behave differently than you may be used to.

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