thesoupasonic (thesoupasonic) wrote,

Sibelius on a laptop, without a keypad

Shortly after writing my previous post last year, about using Sibelius on a laptop, I went on a tour with Alondra de la Parra and the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Americas, during which I had to orchestrate a number of songs rapidly, often in tight spaces, such as buses and planes. There was no space to use a keypad (as suggested in the previous post), and the lapdesk was weighing down my bag.

As such, in part by suggestion of Daniel Spreadbury of SibeliusBlog -- I tweaked a solution for working with Sibelius on a MacBook Pro, without extraneous numeric keypads, lapdesks or other accessories except headphones.

This necessitated remapping certain shortcuts into something that works well under one hand, though gratefully the "option" key on the Mac is present on both the left and right.

Here are my modifications - see how they work for you:

Before you read this, please note that I'm using a MacBook Pro with a US English keyboard layout.
Also, this refers to the mapping of the first keypad set, the "common notes" - obviously, it's mirrored on the subsequent keypad sets as well.

Option-1 - Accent
Option-2 - Dot
Option-3 - Tenuto
Option Q - Natural
Option W - Sharp
Option E - Flat
Option A - 1/4 note (crotchet)
Option S - 1/2 note (minim)
Option D - whole note (semibreve)
Option Z - 1/32 note (demisemiquaver)
Option X - 1/16 note (semiquaver)
Option C - 1/8th note (quaver)

Programming such shortcuts necessitated moving other shortcuts around. For example, I had to switch the "Voice 1 / Voice 2 / Voice 3", which would typically be accessed by Option-1/Option-2/Option-3, to Command-Option-1 / Command-Option-2 / Command-Option-3.

In addition to these modifications, here are some other modifications I've made that I find extremely useful in working with full scores:

Option-Command-S -- optimize staff spacing - very useful for full scores and parts alike
Option-Shift-S - select/filter slurs
Option-Shift-D - select/filter dynamics
Option-Shift-R - Rehearsal Mark text (very useful for custom rehearsal marks like "V1", i.e. verse 1)

Hope this works for you - let me know!

As per those arrangements I had to finish on tour, many of them can be seen and heard in this YouTube playlist -- enjoy!


Tags: music arranging, music composition, music notation, notation, shortcuts, sibelius

  • Sibelius 7 musings

    Sibelius, the dear notation program that I love and spend many hours of the day writing arrangements and orchestrations, released a new version last…

  • Sibelius notation on a laptop - a mobile rig solution that works for me

    I've been a user of the notation program Sibelius since its very first version, having won a copy of it in a raffle at Juilliard, at least 10…

  • Love you for ever, LJ

    Dear friends on LJ (or ЖЖ), I've decided to move this blog to my newly redesigned website. You can now continue following and commenting at…

  • Post a new comment


    Anonymous comments are disabled in this journal

    default userpic

    Your reply will be screened