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Topics - SEBC

General Discussion / Recent experience with Sibelius
Hi all
Hope the Spring is being kind to you in your part of the world.

I was recently invited to contribute to a publication of musical settings of the Psalms, but the editor asked for Finale or Sibelius scores, even though I had used NWC to create my score. I downloaded a trial version of Sibelius because I have a friend composer who has Sibelius, and thought she could help me with any issues that I was likely to encounter. It was the right decision because we ended up spending lots of time together and through email trying to get the score ready. I used the xml converter online to get a file that could be imported into Sibelius, but there were a lot of fixes needed as a result.

If you have watched this funny, but true (and therefore not funny in my context) critique of Sibelius
you will understand why I was screaming in frustration at times at the difficulty of doing what should have been very easy tasks, like assigning tempo markings.

I thought I might be tempted to switch, but I am not. The finished score does look a little nicer than the NWC score, but not enough for me to want to change and use a very non-intuitive engraving program that took massive amounts of time to figure out.

Bill Ashworth commented about needing something different than NWC for the appearance of his works, and I thought I would just weigh in here with my fresh and stressful experience. Here is that former thread
General Discussion / User tool organization
Hello everyone, hope you are all well.

I have questions about the "Group" designations under user tools. First, I would like to express appreciation to the hardworking and innovative NWC users who have thought of ways to make this program fit a lot of needs that the original software does not. Thank you! You have saved me from having to switch to one of the other programs. I would rather write music than learn a computer program.

Questions remain, however. It might become very clear that I have no background understanding or knowledge of how computers and software and coding work. (I don't want to know how the sausage is made, I just want to enjoy the finished product. )

First of all, there are certain tools that I use frequently, such as Parts (adp), which is listed under .starter tools.

I use these .Plugins regularly: arpeggio and ottavamatic.

Under .Automatic, I use CopyPasteMeasures.og

I have a lot of others that I don't use, probably because I'm not sure what they do, and I have my own workflow. Also, I rarely remember which group the ones I do use are in, so I find myself hunting on a regular basis, except for the ones that I can just press "J" and pull up the Object box. (and I don't really get the difference between an object and a plug in, so maybe that has nothing to do with the group question which I will now pose).

Could I combine all the ones that I do use frequently into one group? Why or why not? Could I dump all of the others into another group? Why do I need 6 different groups?
General Discussion / Force a Page Break?
Hello everyone

I am looking at a part score, and seeing that it would be really nice for the performers if I put page two after a couple of rest bars. The problem is that there is a line of music after the rests on page 1. Any tips to achieve a page break?
General Discussion / I've somehow messed up my templates
Hello everyone

I hope you are having a good summer wherever you are in the world.

The last few times I have tried to create a new project, it seems that I have messed up my templates, and they are nowhere to be found. My workaround has been to save an existing project as a new name and delete everything, but that is getting old fast.

Somehow, the "File' -> "New" is opening a different file. How do I redirect it to open the template folder?

Many thanks for your help,
General Discussion / Percussion

I need to score some percussion parts. I've tried out Lloyd's plug in, but does anyone know how do I turn off the roll sound? I've got the staff muted but I'm still hearing the roll in the playback for the cymbal rolls.

Thanks for your help.
General Discussion / Warren Porter's Spacer tool

I'm just popping in to say how helpful this tool has been for me over the years since I started using it. Every time I do, I quietly bless Warren.

What would be an awesome update would be the ability to space multiple staves at the same time. Is that out of question? I don't really know how these things work, just that it saves me a lot of time, and I'm grateful!

General Discussion / Articulation volume adjustment: accents, etc.
I'm sure this has been discussed before, but I am really unhappy with how ENTHUSIASTICALLY my accents are being played back by NWC. So  much so that I have had to take them out of the score, which is not actually what I want. I think I read that they are being played at 40% velocity, but I'm sure what that means and how to tame them so they give a reasonable amount of "oomph" but don't make the listener jump.

I guess the same issue is possibly true of other articulations? Any pianists out there? What's the most artistic use of tenuto, levels of staccato, portato, accent, etc?

Thanks for your help,
General Discussion / Changing Page Size
Happy New Year to everyone,

I'm working on an SSAA choral piece that includes flute, percussion, and piano, so I'm not happy with how it's looking on the page  - with all those staves (eight), there's only one system that fits per page, so it's a 26 page monstrosity, which isn't really great for the choristers who have so many page turns. If the page size was a little bigger, I could fit two systems. How is this achieved in NWC? I don't see anywhere to change those parameters.

All the best,
General Discussion / XML feature
It would be great if someone could develop a tool that would convert NWC or midi files to/from XML. Or does this exist already?

If not, is there a safe software to download to do these activities? With my own compositions, I am hesitant to upload files into cyberspace.
General Discussion / Old Midi interface won't work
The other day, I dug out my old midi interface "Midiman" cables.  I believe I bought them when I was using Windows XP and a midi keyboard. I thought I'd connect up a new electric keyboard and see if I liked importing into NWC that way. I never liked my old midi keyboard, as it was just a controller, and it never felt like I was really "playing" a piano. With the new keyboard, I thought I might have more success in capturing composition ideas.

However, the driver is outdated and won't work on Windows 7 or 10, and M-audio, the company that produces the Uno driver, is no longer supporting the product. I am guessing that means that they aren't writing new drivers that are compatible. Something about 32 bits and 64 bits. My xp computer is long gone, and I wondered if there is a workaround solution? When I googled about the situation, I found this website:

Not being very "techie", I am right in guessing that a programmer might have written a driver to over this problem? If so, how would I know if it is safe to download?

It bugs me that something I invested in is no longer usable. I remember it not being inexpensive. I didn't use it very much because I found that I had better control by using the note entry method instead. If it's safe and possible, I'd like to try again using a better keyboard. Now that I have a lap top, I could even hook it up to an electric piano at work.

Anyone have thoughts on this situation?
General Discussion / Velocity might be the issue

I've noticed that when I make mp3 conversions of my work, the accompaniment (piano) always sounds like it is being "pounded", despite the dynamic level I use. I would like to achieve a more musical effect. Is this possible? I am not sure what to look for in the forum; I don't mind checking out other discussions on the topic. Is it a velocity issue?
General Discussion / Deciding About BAK files
I've recently started having that message pop up when saving that the program is unable to save a BAK file, and do I want to save anyway (which I do). It's possible that I have changed something I shouldn't during a computer housecleaning episode.

This started me thinking whether or not I should fix that issue, or if I actually need the BAK files at all. I've rarely if ever used them, and storage space is becoming an issue on my hard drive, plus I back up my computer onto an external drive regularly.

I did read through the postings on BAK files, and see that some don't use them.

I'm asking for some opinions here (and help for figuring out the unable to save to BAK issue or how to stop the message from appearing).

Edit to add:  my recent question to Mike here ( about having different versions of an object plug-in is linked to the fact that the multiples are BAK files, and I think I would like to delete them in that case. Is this a good or bad idea?)

Many thanks
General Discussion / Uninstall nwc 1
Is there any reason why I should not uninstall version one since I am now using the latest version? I am running out of room on my computer and I need to delete some apps.
General Discussion / Edit M4As?
I need to download a program to edit some sound files. Do you have any recommendations?

General Discussion / NWC on Facebook
I've noticed in the last week that there have been daily posts from NWC on Facebook, with a comment about support and an update in the works!
General Discussion / Unable to change templates
Even though I have followed the steps in the user guide, any changes that I make to my templates are not being saved. It says it is saving them, but then when I go back in a reopen the template, the changes don't show up. I am getting a message about not being able to create a back up, and also that it is being saved in a new format and the old format won't be able to open it. I'm not sure how that is influencing the problem, or why those messages are showing up.

Thanks for your help. I've wasted a lot of time on this and am getting frustrated!
General Discussion / Preparing Teaching Tracks
I have a new choir and have been thinking about how to help them learn their parts. I'd welcome feedback on this topic:

What is the best way to deliver the tracks? CD, Internet - on a website, by email? I've got some choir members who don't use computers...

Has anyone (and is there a way to do it) made youtube videos using an mp3 version?

If I had to make a cassette tape (yikes) for someone (are those even still available to purchase?), what would be the best approach?

What else should I be thinking about?

Years ago, a group I worked with could download a trial version of NWC and practice with scores that way, but I don't think that possibility exists anymore, does it? The benefit was they could see the music part light up as they heard it.

Thanks for your input!

General Discussion / Text running off the printed page
Sometimes when I go to print, I find my text running off the printed page. It might be a label, such as "Children". This often happens after I have changed something and the text measure gets bumped over to a different position. When I first insert the label, I check to see that it looks ok.

Is there anything that I can do to keep the text from doing this?
General Discussion / Filtered Properties
I'm going to learn to do something new in NWC: use Filtered properties. I've used it before to move dynamics around on the score. It works really well. What else could I do with FP? What do y'all use it for?

General Discussion / Beginner Tuba range
This is not a notation question, but a composition question. I am writing a piece for a beginner tuba player (first year, first term). What range will he be able to play? I googled but couldn't find such a specific answer. Anyone out there know?


General Discussion / Disappearing Notes
Code: (nwc) [Select · Download]

These notes don't show up on the print out for some reason. They are layered with another two staves.

Thanks for your help.
General Discussion / Spacing out endings
Every now and then I revisit the topic: Should I switch from using NWC to one of the more common programs? Mostly, it does everything I have needed to do so far.  One thing that annoys me is having to figure out the best way to evenly space out the endings. Is it possible for someone to develop a tool that would do this automatically? I know how to use the "insert" method, but it takes a long time sometimes, and if I have single staff prints, sometimes I end up redoing them multiple times to work better for different instruments.

General Discussion / How to fix this measure
Code: (nwc) [Select · Download]
|Text|Text:"Swing 8ths"|Font:StaffItalic|Pos:11

How can I get the last eighth note to sit correctly within the 4/4 measure?

General Discussion / Sharing a file with Finale user
I can't remember how to do this. I need to send a file to a Finale user, and maintain the lyrics. I think XML is involved. Is that done within NWC or do I need to find a conversion tool online?

Thanks for you help!
General Discussion / Graphic score notation
I’m going to be doing some experimental scores for a graduate project. What capabilities does NWC offer for this type of thing?

I have an example from Roger Dean’s Creative Improvisation”.  The lines of beamed notes are diagonal as opposed to straight across.

I’m unable to upload the photo example for some reason. 😞

There are other possibilities I’m interested in as well.

General Discussion / Things I Don't Know
I have been thinking about the things that I don't know how to do in NWC.

One of them is part printing/set up.

I have been doing this by hand - preparing a separate part based on the master score. Basically, I delete all the other parts and save under the single part (ex. "flute only" or "choral only" or "voices only" as opposed to "choral flute piano" I think there is an easier way to do this, but I don't know how yet. I found this thread but it is 7-9 years old. Could someone please update the topic or let me know if this still applies?

Another mystery to me, and this may be related, is how to use the visibility options. I have only ever used Default and Never. What's up with all the  other settings?

General Discussion / Orchestration Template
I like to compose by ear, and I have an idea to help me learn orchestration: create templates for each instrument showing range, idiomatic figurations and use highlight colours to indicate problematic areas, change in timbre, etc.

Does this exist already?

What else would you include?

What about transposing the templates in concert pitch?

Thank you for your feedback,
General Discussion / Composing for Brass especially trombone
I'm branching out! I've got some jazzy compositions for brass solo instrument and piano accompaniment. I hear trombone in my head because of its jaunty quality. What do I need to know about this combo?
Is there a way to make the score look handwritten and articulated like in this document?:
Any tips for taking the piano part and breaking it into orchestration for other instruments so that it becomes a band arrangement?

I know there are some experts here and look forward to learning from you.
General Discussion / Composing for Harp and Flute Tips
Good morning

I am currently attempting to write my first piece for pedal harp and flute. I've written for piano and flute before, but I'd appreciate any tips for the idiosyncrasies of the harp, and how to notate things in NWC, and get a good playback. This will be performed by actual performers, but it's nice to have a sample recording to get an idea of how it sounds. It's a Celtic ballad sounding piece. The harp and flute take turns with the melody at times, but mostly the harp is providing arpeggiated accompaniment.

General Discussion / sideways wavy line

I'm notating for handbells and need a wavy line that extends from the note to the next note or bar. It would sort of look like a sideways arpeggio line. It is to notate shaking the bell.

Does anything exist?

General Discussion / Getting user tools in right location

I'm having trouble with the new computer, making sure the files are all where they should be. Where should the user tool kit be located? Will it go there automatically when I download it? I think I have already done it but it's not in the program so it's sitting somewhere else.

Thanks for the help,
General Discussion / Bells Used Chart

I'm looking for help on creating a bells used chart for a score that includes handbells.

This is what it will look like: centred under the title, non-playing, measures would need to start with the actual piece, not the bells.

There was a NWC discussion on this years ago here:

but I'm not sure if that is the best approach these days. I'd appreciate your input.

General Discussion / Chord member spacing
Is there a way to get the top dotted quarter to move over in the chord? It looks strange to me and I'm not sure how to fix it. I experimented here with increasing the dot spacing to .2 but it doesn't seem to change the actual note position which looks too far to the left.



General Discussion / Swing rhythm
Is there a quick way to change the playback to swing style?

I’ve just spent a long time making a hidden staff with triplets and will mute the visible staff.

General Discussion / New Strange Sound Issue

I was happily working on a score that contains three staves but when I played it back, about half way through, one staff stopped playing audibly but I can hear it trying to sound the notes. When I removed all the other staves, it played normally. I need them all to play together as I'm trying to export the midi. When I try to export, the midi file behaves the same way.

I am perplexed! What should I be checking?
General Discussion / Placement issues
I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, but something is up with verse 3. Is there a hidden space somewhere?

Is there a better way to achieve verse numbering? I've used the number/underscore/first word of verse method for a long time.

Edit: I guess I need to insert a screenshot! That would show the issues. Basically, the third verse number does not line up with the others and I can't see anything that is stopping it.


Code: (nwc) [Select · Download]
General Discussion / boxed text
Good morning
 Here is a new question which I haven't found an answer for.

Is it possible to box text and place it anywhere on the staff? Some text instructions should be put in a box for better visibility, and I was able to do this with some at the barline using the bar label tool. I couldn't find any other way to accomplish it. Is there another way to do this? What happens if the text needs to be in the middle of the phrase? The bar label tool won't work then.

I will try to attach a sample. This works ok but could be moved over to the right:
Code: (nwc) [Select · Download]
|User||Pos:14|Text:"With Audience"

The text "Spoken" should  be boxed:

Code: (nwc) [Select · Download]
|Text|Text:"  Spoken:"|Font:PageSmallText|Pos:7

Thanks for your help.
General Discussion / Hairpins
I am looking for help in getting those hairpins to behave satisfactorily.

I found this topic from 10 years ago.

Have there been any new tricks or tools discovered? I've tried using an invisible muted grace note and that helps sometimes. Not always, like when I want a new hairpin after a whole note to show a crescendo on the note moving into a new dynamic range.


General Discussion / Learning to crescendo and decrescendo
I know you guys are probably tired of my questions but when I search for answers I don’t usually find what I’m looking for and then I wonder If I am looking at the most recent information.

I found this discussion

My  midi files are not usually very good because I can’t seem to control the subtle nuances that I can produce on an acoustic instrument. Now that I am sending the files to conductors along with my scores for their consideration than I really need to step up that part of things.

I also have trouble with piano notes decaying too quickly in the left-hand. For example I had a two  measure cord in the left-hand and by the time the second measure came around the sound had completely disappeared.
General Discussion / Why use hidden staves?
I’ve been rethinking my workflow. I'm sure I’m being inefficient and missing some key things. I’d welcome suggestions.

I start with a melody staff.

Then I create just one hidden staff full of notes that I attach chord names  to as lyrics. This helps me think through my harmonic progressions. I will usually delete this by the end of the composition because the chords tend to clutter up the score and the
Harmony is Contained in the voices and instrumental parts.

What else could or should I use h s for? I do find my staves are quite cluttered with dynamics and tempo and text and lyrics etc. It’s hard to move things around because I keep grabbing the wrong thing. 

General Discussion / Italics again
I need to use a Hebrew phrase in an English piece and would like to italicize it. Is there a tool for this?