Three Sibelius plug-ins from Kenneth Gaw will make your life easier

Tips

Plug-in developer Kenneth Gaw ‘s plug-ins for Sibelius are bound to save you time and mouse-clicks. Let’s take a look.

All of these plug-ins may be downloaded directly through Sibelius at File > Plug-ins > Install Plug-ins > [Category]. Or, you can download each plug-in and install them manually, or by using the Install New Plug-in plug-in.

Copy and Paste Across Tuplets

If you have used Sibelius for any period of time, you may be wondering why Sibelius hates tuplets so much. Okay, that’s a bit of an overstatement, but there’s no denying that tuplets are a special case.

Say you tried to copy a passage like this into the respective spot in the subsequent bar, using the ordinary methods built into Sibelius:

tuplets-1

You would be left with an unspeakable mess:

tuplets-2

Oh, that is so depressing. But Kenneth Gaw has devised a solution with his twin plug-ins Copy and Paste Across Tuplets, found in the Tuplets category. After making the first selection, you run Copy Across Tuplets, and a dialog appears:

copy-across

OK the dialog, then click on the first note or rest in the top stave of place you wish to paste to. Then, run Paste Across Tuplets to achieve this glorious result:

tuplets-3

There are some caveats, which you should read about on the plug-in’s download page. Note, for instance, that the plug-in uses it’s own internal clipboard, and not the Sibelius clipboard, for copying and pasting. Still, this solution is a welcome one indeed for those troubling tuplet times.

Move Selection Left/Right

This ingenious plug-in — again, actually the twin plug-ins Move Selection Left and Move Selection Right, found in the Navigation category — effectively slide your music to the next contextually sensible location. They work best when shortcuts are enabled for quick, repetitive action. Kenneth recommends Command-Option-Home and Command-Option-End (Ctrl+Alt+Home and Ctrl+Alt+End on PC), respectively, to move a selection left or right.

More slick than copying and pasting music and then deleting all the leftover bits, this one’s fun to use:

moving

The plug-in’s download page explains some of the relevant details — notes are not split when moved, for instance (you can see that the quarter note in the above example remains intact).

Easy Drum Kit Notes

Easy Drum Kit Notes is found in the Composing Tools category. Kenneth says it “was written for my high school students to make drum kit input easier. The user selects any note or notes, runs the plug-in and then chooses the type of drum, cymbal, etc. from the drop-down menu. The plug-in then alters the notehead and note placement accordingly.”

easy-drum-kit

It’s a very straightforward way of simplifying basic drum set entry if you don’t need or want to remember your percussion map settings.

Tidy Score

Finally, Kenneth has updated his Tidy Score plug-in, found in the Layout category, to optionally reset the design of the score. Tidy Score has several use cases, but I typically find it most handy when I receive a score from another user and want to quickly get it ready to accept my house style by resetting many of the score’s settings to its defaults. It’s a five-in-one plug-in (six-in-one with the latest update):

  1. Layout > Staff Spacing > Reset Space Above
  2. Layout > Staff Spacing > Reset Space Below
  3. Appearance > Design and Position > Reset Position
  4. Appearance > Reset Notes > Reset Note Spacing
  5. Layout > Staff Spacing > Optimize
  6. Appearance > Design and Position > Reset Design (optional)

Enjoy these new plug-ins and the time you save by using them! And many thanks, Kenneth!

Comments

  1. Engela Fullard

    I will be installing these plug-ins straight away. The triplet one is going to be my Number One life saver. Thank you Kenneth Gaw!

    1. Philip Rothman

      Excellent, Engela!

  2. Kenneth Gaw

    Thanks very much for your clear and lucid explanations.

  3. Kelly Fenton

    I am in the middle of a piece with a million tuplets doubled all over so that plugin will be a huge time saver! I’m also excited for the drum kit one as every time I do a new arrangement for my kids at school (in which I always utilize the playback feature) it takes a few minutes to refresh my memory on Sibelius’s drum map. This will be quite helpful. Thanks Kenneth for these and thanks Philip for bringing them to our attention!

    1. Philip Rothman

      Thanks, Kelly, always great to hear from you!

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