In our review of the Sibelius 2020.12 update, I added a little teaser for those readers hardy enough to make it all the way to the end of the article. Those brave souls learned that we were close to revealing a new offering to help people improve the way they use scoring software. I don’t like keeping anyone in suspense for too long, so it’s time to announce Scoring Express, the latest offering from NYC Music Services and Notation Central, our marketplace for music notation technology.
Scoring Express is a collection of high-quality, professional templates for Sibelius — based on the same templates we use at NYC Music Services.
Each Scoring Express package is much more than just the templates. It contains manuscript papers, house styles, music and text fonts, and plug-ins — all installed in one go, so you can get started right away. Have a look at our little promo:
In the course of this process, I started thinking that perhaps other people could benefit from these tools, too. No doubt you know that we’ve shared hundreds of tips here on Scoring Notes — the “how” to tweak settings and make your scores look as good as possible, and no doubt you know we’ve explored the “why” — the better your music looks, the better it is for everyone. What if we shared the “what” as well — the materials themselves?
With direct importation of Sibelius files into a template having finally made its way into Sibelius, it seemed like a good time to do just that.
So that’s what Scoring Express is. It’s an easy way to install a complete package so you don’t have to grab fonts from one place, Sibelius files from another, plug-ins from somewhere else, and figure out where the heck it goes in some library folder on your computer. We’ve done all that for you.
One install gets you at least nine different professional templates, as well as all the manuscript papers derived from them.
Once you open a template or manuscript paper, you can import an existing file into it, both to instantly beautify it and to arrange it further, like we showed how to do in our review of Sibelius 2020.12. Here, we’re using the Big band landscape (Norfolk Sans) template:
Plus, all the house styles are included too, so you can import them into an existing document, in case you prefer to import a house style into something you’ve already set up nicely with page format and document setup. We’ve also included a separate Parts house style for each package, so you can bring that style into your dynamic parts using Multiple Part Appearance.
We’ve really thought through the myriad engraving rules, text styles, and all the other settings to help make these scores look as good as possible. That’s not all — each file comes packed with lots of extra goodies, like lines and symbols that aren’t included with default Sibelius files and can otherwise be time-consuming to set up:
Each Scoring Express package comes with the complete set of the Norfolk and Pori fonts — no separate installation required — along with other beautiful music and text fonts like the Figurato figured bass font, the Gothic A1 text font (which pair nicely with the Norfolk Sans chord symbols), and Steinberg’s Academico and Petaluma Script text fonts. These fonts are what give these scores a distinctive look from the stock “Sibelius” appearance, and they wouldn’t have been possible without a lot of talented individuals who contributed to their appearance. The handiwork of Bernie Cossentino, Anthony Hughes, Jeff Kellem, Matthew Maslanka, Daniel Spreadbury, Robin Walker, and Bob Zawalich is represented here.
The Scoring Express Jazz package even includes a “New Real Book” style lead sheet that approaches the look of that venerable collection (Palatino is required for the text, which is already present on most computers):
Of course, no template will instantly turn anyone into a Paul Revere-award winning engraver — there’s no substitute for studying scores and getting as familiar with music notation and software best practices as possible. But I think Scoring Express will help shorten the path to achieving quality results more quickly.
To help even more, each suite is being offered at an introductory price of $47.99 through the end of this year, after which the price will be $59.99. We’ve started with the Chamber and Jazz suites for now, with more to come!