Lyrics and vocal music, part 2

Scoring Notes
Scoring Notes
Lyrics and vocal music, part 2

Knowing the various rules and conventions that govern the setting of lyrics in vocal music is a good start, but if you use music notation software, there’s more to learn. In this second of a two-part episode, Philip Rothman and David MacDonald discuss how to actually apply those principles in the leading scoring programs: Finale, Dorico, and Sibelius.

There’s a surprising degree of overlap in the way that these programs approach lyrics, but also some crucial differences. We first start by talking about how the software conceptualizes lyrics, and where to find them in the program. We discuss the various ways that you can actually get the lyrics into the file: typing into the score, copying and pasting, and importing.

A few small but useful details don’t go overlooked: hard spaces, hyphens, elisions are important elements of lyrics but are special cases when it comes to inputting text.

Then, how do you edit the lyrics once they’re into the score? Lyric settings are found in a variety of places in the software — document options, engraving rules, text style definitions, default positions — and we help you find your away around and try to avoid some common pitfalls.

Hyphenation, or syllabification, is a hot-button topic and we offer up several tips of our own as well as those from podcast listeners. We also take a few questions and address those at the end of the episode.

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  1. Jon Arnold

    Heard your call for Lilypond scores, and here I am:

    1. Philip Rothman

      Ha, that’s awesome! Thanks, Jon for this little gem. It’s all in good fun :-)

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