Dan Kreider on hymnal engraving

Scoring Notes
Scoring Notes
Dan Kreider on hymnal engraving

Millions of people sing from church hymnals each week, and that means millions of people are looking at music notation all the time. Getting those notes onto the page in a form that is both flexible enough to suit the needs of a particular congregation, and yet have lasting permanence for generations of churchgoers is the job of our guest, Dan Kreider.

Philip Rothman and David MacDonald talk with Dan about his role as the founder of Hymnworks, a service that has produced tens of thousands of copies of custom hymnals. Not only is Dan an expert engraver, he’s also one of the top music notation software specialists, having worked extensively in Finale and Dorico. Just like the members of a choir singing together, the particularities of font choices, page sizes, stem direction, paper weights and software settings have to all work together in harmony. Dan has thought about it all in his decades of experience.

More: Hymnworks, Dan Kreider’s custom hymnal preparation service


  1. James Gilbert

    Regarding your brief mention of music on tablets. I stopped using paper for playing hymns in 2005 and rarely use paper music for anything, whether church music or other performances. But, I’ve only run across two people in all this time that were using a tablet for singing. With my church fearful of using hymnals due to the risk of congregants catching the covid-19 virus from the paper in the hymnals, we just aren’t singing anything. I can’t help but wonder if this will help move music reading to tablets or more display of music on overhead screens? Now, how do we get churches who display only words on an overhead screen to also display the music?

  2. Bob Zawalich

    This was a really great episode.I love entering someone else’s universe, and being able to see what is crucially important to them that I may never have paid attention to, and this was a journey to an interesting place. That fact that the paper you order can have completely different characteristics, and that having the wrong “identical thing” is an important thing to be aware of. Bravo to all.

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