Sibelius Tutorial: Drum Parts From Scratch

For inexperienced Sibelius users, one of the more complex (and misunderstood) tasks is to create drum parts from scratch.  In a couple of earlier posts I described quick and easy ways to add drum parts to your score – by using the Ideas Hub (Sibelius 5 and 6 only), and by using the Add Drum Part plugin.  However, there are times when you need to start from scratch and the video below describes a straightforward method for doing just that.

And if you’d like to print out a copy of the instructions, they’re here: Drum Parts from Scratch.  The written instructions also describe the method for inputting drum parts using your MIDI keyboard.



Musescore in 10 easy steps: part 1

Happy New Year!  Well, one of my new year’s resolutions is to post more frequently to this blog and I thought I’d start off by sharing a series of tutorial videos about the free notation program MuseScore. MuseScore is a good cost-effective alternative to professional notation programs like Sibelius and Finale and is being adopted by many in the education sector.

This series of 10 short videos will cover the basics of using MuseScore: setting up a score, moving around the screen, note entry and sharing your scores.


If you’re interested in seeing other how-to videos, there are a series of Sibelius videos here.

Sibelius tutorial: easy manuscript templates

If you compose or arrange regularly for a particular music ensemble, you might find yourself setting up scores using the same group of instruments over and over again.  To save time, you can set up score templates in Sibelius which will appear in the list of ensembles in the New Score Wizard.  To find out how, take a look at this video:


If you ever need to delete or rename a manuscript template you can do so by heading to a folder called Manuscript Paper which is located in Sibelius’s application data folder.  Here are the locations of that folder (which differs depending on which operating system you’re working with):

Windows Vista: C:\Users\username\Application Data\Sibelius Software\Sibelius 6\

Windows XP: C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\

Sibelius Software\Sibelius 6

Mac: /Users/username/Library/Application Support/Sibelius Software/Sibelius 6

Creating melodic flashcards with Sibelius

Here’s the first of a series of short tutorial videos: how to create melodic flashcards with Sibelius and Microsoft Word.  If you’re a Kodaly or Orff advocate, you’ll know how useful it can be to use melodic and rhythmic flashcards to reinforce learning in the music classroom.  This first tutorial shows you how to create a short melody in Sibelius and then copy it across into Microsoft Word where you can reformat it and print it out.  Look out for the follow-up tutorial about creating rhythmic flashcards with stick notation.