The “rite” way to copy old scores into new software

Scoring Notes
Scoring Notes
The "rite" way to copy old scores into new software

Stephen Taylor is here to talk all about his adventure entering the entire score of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring into Dorico. Steve is a professor of composition and theory at University of Illinois School of Music and co-director of its modern ensemble. He’s had a long and varied history composing music and studying scores, and an almost equally long history using music notation software — starting first with early versions of Finale and Sibelius before moving on to Dorico. Not only has he copied The Rite of Spring, but he’s done the same with other masterworks of Shostakovich, Schubert, Mahler, and other composers. He tells Philip Rothman and David MacDonald how copying scores into programs like Dorico can be an effective way of both learning the music and the notation technology. That’s what we’re all about on Scoring Notes, so the only sacrifice you’ll need to make is a little bit of your time to hear what Steve has to say.

More on Scoring Notes: Dorico and The Rite of Spring


  1. Pablo Aslan

    Fascinating. Thank you!
    I also started on Finale 1.0 as a graduate student at UCLA in the late 80s. I remember those 3 huge volumes and how exciting it was to learn. Maybe exciting is not the word… Anyway, I’ve searched in vain for the icons, the little monks, that were part of the initial Finale. I haven’t been able to find them on the net. Just for kicks, obviously. Thanks for the podcast!

    1. Philip Rothman

      Thanks for that comment, Pablo. Glad you enjoyed it! Did you see this post from the Finale blog?

    2. Stephen Taylor

      Yes, those little monks, I had forgotten about them!

  2. Steve Steele

    I began using Finale while at the University of North Texas in the early 1990s. Besides everyday use, I made early attempts at George Crumb style notation (Spiral Galaxy, etc..), and Schenkerian graphs. There was a plugin that allowed Finale docs to export as Postscript and be imported into Illustrator. With early-mid technology this was slightly maddening. Today it works well and I use Affinity Designer Assets and Apple’s Keynote to publish graphs.

    Anyway, the fact that Finale could do this at all in 1995 was, (and still is), impressive.

    I’ve been using Dorico for a couple of year or so and there’s to like much about it, especially its workflow style and playback features.

    I haven’t had time to learn how to produce reduction graphs in Dorico yet, but I’m hoping the developers kept us music theorists in mind!

    Does anyone know of a Dorico Schenkerian graphing forum or group? I’d like to see what others are doing on the platform. I’m not sure I would ever completely abandon Finale, but I am curious about Dorico’s capabilities.

    Steve Steele

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