copying and pasting just lyrics

• Aug 1, 2011 - 23:25

How do I copy and past just the lyrics from the soprano part to the tenor part? The video assumes I want to copy the lyrics and the melody.


Lyrics are one of the weak points of MuseScore. The only copy and paste functionality is to copy from an external text file and paste into lyrics in MuseScore. You can also copy and paste melody plus lyrics, but if you subsequently change any of the durations, it blows the lyrics away. One way to generate different vocal parts with the same lyrics is to write one of them, copy and paste it to the others, and then move the pitches only with the mouse. Anything else blows out the lyrics.

-- J.S.

Has an issue been filed for this?

I've attached a sample if it hasn't:

1. Open attached score.
2. Drag-select the lyrics of 'Lyrics'.
3. Copy.
4. Select the first note of 'No Lyrics'.
5. Paste.

Desired result: Lyrics paste onto notes.
Actual result: Nothing is pasted.

For examples without the same notes, I'm unsure if this would work.

Using MuseScore 1.1 and 2.0 Nightly Build (5025) - Mac 10.6.8.

Attachment Size
Pasting Lyrics.mscz 1.72 KB

In reply to by rogganet

Drag-select may have been the best way to select lyrics 5+ years ago when the above was posted (!), but luckil,y there are better ways now.

First, drag-select requires use of shift. Shift and drag will draw a rectangle and select what's in it. But it's often pretty awkward to get just what you want.

The better way to select a set of lyrics is to first select the range itself normally - eg, click one note,m shift+click another to select the whole range - then right click a lyric and use Select / All Similar Elements in Range Selection.

There are other ways as well, but this is the easiest I think.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

OK I can do this much. I select a bunch of bars as you said, I get a blue box around EVERYTHING. Then I "right" click one lyric and say Select all similar in Range. Good. Now only the lyrics are blue. That's what I want. Lyrics. Nothing else. Now what I want to do is drag all the lyrics down a bit all at once. Everything I've tried has resulted in either going back where I was or selecting only the one lyric and wasting all my selection work. After I've selected it, HOW CAN I DRAG IT ALL DOWN TOGETHER?

In reply to by Tixrus

This thread about an older version of MuseScore was about copy and paste, not moving things.

Normally you should not need to be adjusting lyrics manually - they should already be well aligned and avoiding other elements by the amounts given in your style settings. So if you want a different amount of clearance, better to change the style settings than to waste time manually adjusting things (which actually won't work anyhow because of the automatic alignment).

If you need further assistance, please start a new thread and attach the score you are having trouble with, so we can understand and assist better.

In reply to by John Sprung

To be clear, copying lyrics from one score and pasting to another works perfectly well, exactly the same as copying from one section to another within the same score. Just select the lyrics you want to copy, Ctrl+C, click the note you want to paste, Ctrl+V. As long as the rhythms match, you're good. This has been the case sinc the release of 2.0 back in 2015. Easiest way to select lyrics is usually to select a range (click one measure, shift+click another), then right-click a syllable, Select / All Similar Elements in Range Selection - again, this has not changed since 2015.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

So :
' right click a lyric and use Select / All Similar Elements in Range Selection'
I never knew any operation could be performed on part of a selection. Need to have a look,
but that indeed seems a great improvement.
The one advantage of doing it line by line, which this method of course would also be fine for, is that voices generally don't sing exactly the same lyrics. Selecting the entire voice to copy to another would only work if the rythm and the words are exactly the same?

In reply to by rogganet

The rhythms don't have to be *exactly* the same, but the assignment of syllables to notes does have to be. So for example, the source might have two half notes and the destination might have a dotted half and a quarter, and it will still work.

So yes, when copying and pasting lyrics, you will generally need to do it in smaller batches rather than a whole piece at once, if there are places where the content of the voices is different. Line by line is one way, but in many cases you'll be able to copy more than a line at a time without problems, so the range selection method is especially good. Also see the "More" option in the Select menu, which gives you a dialog allowing you to select by staff, by system, by voice, by verse, etc.

What I have done to work around this is:

1. Create a new "instrument" for the part you want to add lyrics to, in this case the tenor.
2. Copy the notes from the old tenor part into the new one.
3. Copy the soprano part into the original tenor part. This will copy both notes and lyrics.
4. Copy the new tenor part back to the original tenor part. This will overwrite the notes back to what they should be, but more importantly, it will leave the lyrics there.
5. Delete the instrument you created in step 1.

I find this much less painful than re-entering a bunch of notes or lyrics.
- John

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