Join Jenny Amaya for an in-depth discussion in this video The Sibelius ABCs, part of Sibelius 7 Essential Training.
Now that you've had a chance to work with a variety of functions and shortcuts in Sibelius, I'd like to share with you what I think are the best of the shortcuts, what I call the Sibelius ABCs. They are the simple one letter keys on your QWERTY keyboard that make Sibelius run. It's fun to point these out to you at this point in your Sibelius education because you'll not only enjoy putting these shortcuts into perspective and into use, but you'll be pleasantly surprised to find out that you actually know most of them already. So let's take a look at the Sibelius ABCs. First we know that the letters A through G are the note names A through G, so if we start note entry here in this bar, I'll click on that bar rest and I'll choose a value in my keypad, a quarter note, and the letters A, B, C, D, E, F and G.
Those are our notes A through G. I'm going to go ahead and Escape. Next in the ABCs is H, and we know this one already also. If we select a note and use H, we get a hairpin. I is for the Instruments dialog box. So letter I gives us instruments, and let's go ahead and add a guitar tab staff here. So I'm going to go to the Guitars category and let's do an Acoustic Guitar tab, I'm going to add that to the Score there and click OK.
So I for instruments. J is a guitar bend. It's actually shaped like the letter J when you put it into tablature. So let's go ahead and put some of these notes into the tablature staff. I'm just going to select these here and copy and paste them into the tab, Ctrl+V. I'm going to drag this down just a little bit here, there we go, and Escape. So let's put a guitar bend in, the letter J. I'm going to load that in my mouse, then I can just click it in here, and it's kind of shaped like the letter J, and Escape.
The letter K is for key signatures; that brings up our key signature menu. And we can Escape out of that, and the letter L is our Lines menu, and Escape. The letter M is our Mixer, there it is there, and the letter M will toggle that Mixer on and off, And the letter N is actually for Note. It's a shortcut that can get you into note entry, if you'd like to use a shortcut to do that. So if I select this bar rest here and normally I can just select a value and a note, but if I'd like to get that input carat first, I can select the letter N and now I'm in note entry, and this becomes more important for you later when you start working with multiple voices.
I'm going to escape. The letter O is an Open shortcut. It's actually not assigned and you can assign your own shortcuts in Preferences. So if I go to the File tab, down to Preferences and make our way to the Keyboard Shortcuts, and this is where you can assign your own shortcuts if you'd like to. Let's go ahead and cancel out of Preferences. Moving on from the letter O is the letter P and we know the letter P is for Play, so if I hit P-- (music playing) and Escape, Sibelius plays from the playback line.
The letter Q is for Clefs, and we'll escape out of the Clefs menu. The letter R is for Repeat, so if we select anything and hit the letter R, it gets repeated in the Score. The letter S of course is for a Slur, so select a note and the letter S gives you a Slur. The letter T opens the Time Signature menu, so it's T for Time Signature, and we'll escape out of there. The letter U, like the letter O, is unassigned. The letter V is also unassigned.
I like to think that the letters O, U and V are kind of shaped similarly, which makes it easy to remember that they're all unassigned shortcuts. The letter W will swap you between your Score and your most recently viewed Part, so if I select the Acoustic Guitar here, and hit the letter W, we'll go to that Part, and W again will toggle us back to the Score. The letter X will flip things. Now this is a fun one. It's almost like its own little theme, it's got going on. So if I select a slur, let's escape and select a slur here.
If I use the letter X it will flip that slur. The letter X will also flip stems, so if I select a note, I'm going to hit Escape and select a note, the letter X will flip the stem of that note. Another cool thing that X does, if we have an accent or a note-head marking on a note, so let's go ahead and put an accent on this note. If I select that accent, let's go ahead and zoom in on that with Ctrl++ (Plus), if I use X now, it will flip the position of that note-head marking.
Let's go ahead and escape from there and I'll zoom back out with Ctrl or Command+- (Minus). The letter Y and most of the shortcuts that use the letter Y have something to do with playback. So for example, bringing up the Playback Controls is the shortcut Ctrl+Alt+Y or Command+Option+Y on the Mac. And if you want to move the green playback line to any selection that you make in the Score, you can make a selection by clicking on a note and just use the plain letter Y to move the playback line to your selection.
Also if you're not sure where the playback line is, you can use Shift+Y to jump to it. So if we move it off the screen, I'm going to use my Bracket key here to move this line off the screen a little bit, that's the bracket to the right of the letter P on your QWERTY keyboard. If we don't know where it is, then you can use Shift+Y to jump to it. And finally the letter Z of course is our Symbols menu. So as you can see there were only a few ABCs you hadn't learned yet. These shortcuts are very easy to use and they're also very intuitive and easy to remember.
So I encourage you to practice your ABCs every time you use Sibelius.
Prerequisite: A basic understanding of music notation and theory will yield the best results from this course.
- Working with Magnetic Layout
- Setting essential preferences
- Controlling basic score playback
- Ensuring good score readability and organization
- Adding time signatures and key signatures
- Entering notes, rests, accidentals, and chords
- Inputting notation with a MIDI keyboard
- Creating and extending slurs and phrase marks
- Engraving and formatting
- Saving time with quick key shortcuts
- Printing and exporting a completed project
- Sharing scores via the Scorch plug-in