New research suggests that musicians do (to quote a grammatically awkward advertising campaign) “think different” to normal folks. According to this article at VUCast from Vanderbilt University:
…professionally trained musicians more effectively use a creative technique called divergent thinking, and also use both the left and the right sides of their frontal cortex more heavily than the average person.
The research suggests that there’s particular benefit to learning music notation:
“Musicians may be particularly good at efficiently accessing and integrating competing information from both hemispheres,” Folley said. “Instrumental musicians often integrate different melodic lines with both hands into a single musical piece, and they have to be very good at simultaneously reading the musical symbols, which are like left-hemisphere-based language, and integrating the written music with their own interpretation, which has been linked to the right hemisphere.”
So can we officially declare that using Sibelius makes you smarter? Perhaps that’s a bit of a stretch.