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  • Useful Software

  • Julia Selberg

    Member
    18 March, 2021 at 8:44 pm

    I would like to put some of my arrangements down in writing, and wonder
    (1) if anyone would recommend a particular piece of music notation software (Crescendo? Musescore?) that works well for harp charts and
    (2) if there is any software out there that facilitates putting in brackets.

  • Titia Stultitia

    Member
    18 March, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    I’ve been a very happy user of the free music notation software MuseScore. You can download it from musescore.org. Free is really free, so without ads etc.

    It’s a very versatile program and there’s an active community willing to help out with any problems. There’s are also several tutorials to get you going.

    Until a few years ago, I used Harmony Assistant (paid, but rather affordable) as a music notation program. I loved it. But when MuseScore 3 came, that program became my favourite.

    • Titia Stultitia

      Member
      18 March, 2021 at 9:05 pm

      I wanted to edit my answer, but the sofware of this site wouldn’t let me do this. So here follows my edit:

      Edit: Yes, you could make a harp chart with MuseScore.

      And yes, you can add brackets with MuseScore, read this whole thread: https://musescore.org/en/node/18793 It’s easier to make brackets than it looks from the description.

  • Judiann Maddigan

    Member
    18 March, 2021 at 11:01 pm

    I’ve been using MuseScore for a couple of years now, and I love it. 😍

    For brackets, the easiest way I found is to create a custom Harp palette. I added two brackets there, one for above the notes and the other for below. Then I just drag them onto the score. However, each bracket’s length must be adjusted individually. It’s not ideal, but it works.


    Overall, the program is fantastic. One of my favorite features is that MuseScore plays audio for the sheet music, and it actually sounds like a harp. You can adjust the volume of specific notes, for example, to make the right-hand melody louder than the left-hand chords. You can also slow down the playback speed and practice along with it.

    There is a learning curve. It took me 2 weeks to get everything looking precisely the way I wanted it. (I started with an earlier version, and they have improved it since then.) Just be patient with yourself, and don’t try to figure out brackets during your first session of learning the software.

    There are plenty of MuseScore users on the forums here who would be happy to answer questions. We will be enablers so that you, too, will find yourself spending HOURS with this program. 😄

    • Annais Ryder

      Member
      19 March, 2021 at 4:16 pm

      May I ask if there is a way in Musescore to sort sheets. I saw it does it by title or composer, but I cant see any tag or folder structure. I can imagine the collecion going out of hand if one were to import dozens of sheets. I mean it woud be nice say to have Christmas, Folk or excercises categories/folders. How do you organise your sheets within the program? The program looks fantastic, but I am wondering if I am missing some feature or just dont understand how it works. Thank you!

      • Judiann Maddigan

        Member
        19 March, 2021 at 7:43 pm

        @annais.ryder You’re looking for a way to add tags and labels to scores, similar to the way ForScore organizes PDF files. Wouldn’t that be a nice feature? As far as I know, MuseScore doesn’t have that ability within the program itself. My scores are organized into a system of folders and sub-folders using Finder on my Mac. Finder can add tags to files, and then MuseScore can narrow a File > Open search to a tag.


        Most of my organizing is done with spreadsheets. I track all of my scores on Google Sheets, with columns for things like key, difficulty level, version number, comments, and whether it has been printed. Hard copies are organized in 3-ring binders with A-Z tabs, ordered by file name. I’ve set MuseScore to automatically print the date and file name in the footers.

        • Judiann Maddigan

          Member
          19 March, 2021 at 8:02 pm

          To clarify, I’m referring to the MuseScore free notation software from musescore.org, not the MuseScore app.

        • Annais Ryder

          Member
          24 March, 2021 at 12:19 am

          Thank you for your reply! Yes I ofcourse mixed up the software and the app. For some reason I decided that they are the same and that I am simply not finding all the features! This clarified it for me!

          • Judiann Maddigan

            Member
            24 March, 2021 at 12:59 am

            @annais.ryder I’ve never tried the app, but it occurred to me after I posted my first reply that you might have loaded the app instead. It all gets confusing because “MuseScore” can refer to three different things.

            1. MuseScore.org is the site to download the free software, which can create, import, edit, play back, and print sheet music. It requires a computer to run.

            2. MuseScore.com has over a million scores that can be downloaded by the public. However, a Pro account there is not free.

            3. The MuseScore app, for phones or tablets, which does not have the ability to edit scores.

  • Julia Selberg

    Member
    19 March, 2021 at 12:14 am

    Thank you so much! Early returns suggest that Musescore is worth a (patient) try.

  • Julia Selberg

    Member
    19 March, 2021 at 12:20 am

    Thank you so much! Early returns suggest I should give Musescore a (patient) try.

    • Judiann Maddigan

      Member
      19 March, 2021 at 1:26 am

      Look at it this way… You’re learning to play the harp. Learning MuseScore is much easier than that. 😀

      • Julia Selberg

        Member
        20 March, 2021 at 3:26 am

        Musescore is terrific! It did what I needed, is very straightforward, and you can’t beat the price. Thanks again for the coaching.😉

        • Judiann Maddigan

          Member
          20 March, 2021 at 3:46 am

          @julia.selberg Oh, good! I’m glad to hear it’s working for you. If you run into any questions, post back again and someone will probably be able to help. Have fun with it.

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Original Post
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