Text basics

Updated 2 months ago

    Add text

    To add a text-based element to the score, use one of the following general methods:

    • Keyboard shortcut: For example, press Ctrl+Tto enter Staff text , Ctrl+L to enter Lyrics, and so on.
    • Menu command: AddText allows you to choose from a range of text-based elements.
    • Workspace: Select a note and double-click an icon in one of the palettes; or, alternatively, drag a symbol from a palette onto the staff. E.g. Swing text, Tempo text etc.

    Notes: (1) The exact method depends on the type of text you are adding (see Text). (2) For general-purpose text boxes attached to staves, see Staff and system text.

    Text formatting

    When a text object is created in MuseScore, it assumes the corresponding Text Style: all staff text, for example, has a unique Text Style, as have tempo markings, dynamics, chord symbols etc. Each Text Style consists of a number of text properties (font-face, font-size, font-style etc.), which can be viewed, mainly, in the Text Styles dialog (FormatStyle…Text Styles).

    A newly-created text object starts off with identical text properties to the Text Style. These can be viewed in the Inspector:

    Text properties displayed in the Inspector

    However, these text properties are not limited to those of the default Text Style: if need be, you can edit them in the Inspector independently of Text Style.

    Finally, if you want to apply formatting to specific characters in a text object (font-face, font-size, Bold, Italic, Underline, superscript, subscript), you can do so in text edit mode.

    Adjust position of text objects

    To position a text object, use any of the following methods:

    • Drag the object.
    • Select the object and adjust the X or Y offset values in the Inspector.
    • Select the object and apply any of the following keyboard shortcuts:
      • : Move text left 0.1 staff space.
      • : Move text right 0.1 staff space.
      • : Move text up 0.1 staff space.
      • : Move text down 0.1 staff space.
      • Ctrl+ (Mac: +): Move text left one staff space.
      • Ctrl+ (Mac: +): Move text right one staff space.
      • Ctrl+ (Mac: +): Move text up one staff space.
      • Ctrl+ (Mac: +): Moves text down one staff space.

    Text anchors

    When you apply a text element to the score, its anchor position will depend on the type:

    • Title, Subtitle, Composer, Poet: Anchored to a frame.
    • Fingering: Anchored to note heads.
    • Lyrics: Anchored to a time position (a note/chord, but not a rest).
    • Chord symbol: Anchored to a time position.
    • Staff text: Anchored to a time position.
    • System text: Anchored to a time position.

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