How do I transpose from a Musician playing an instrument to a musician singing?

• Apr 25, 2018 - 13:14

This may be odd for orchestral musicians and people who are writing orchestral music. There are some orchestral pieces that require the musicians in the orchestra to sing or to say something.

Here's an example of a performance of Oskar Navarro's Libertadores where in one part the orchestra musicians are singing. Skip to the 3:34 mark so you can hear how the musicians transpose to singing and then go back to playing their instruments. And then at Mark 4:01, The string players are playing their instruments again.

I just don't know how to do this in any score. Can you please help me out with this?


In reply to by mike320

That is an option too of course, but as there are 2 such changes (instrument->voice->instrument) and for many instruments, there are many additional channels in the mixer. Also the singers might be assignd to different sections, like one violinist might sing Soprano, another Alto.

In reply to by mike320

Ok. I can do that. And while I select the Voice instrument when the Musician sings, I should also put down lyrics, and then the musician will go back to playing his or her instrument when I write the Instrument name and thee articulation “Normale,” which means Play Normally.

In reply to by Arianna2001

If you had the violins playing pizzicato, switch to singing then start playing Arco. the Arco would be mandatory. If, in this example, after singing I wanted them to continue playing pizzicato I would probably put (pizz.) under the instrument name to remind the musicians that they are playing pizzicato and I intend for them to continue playing pizzicato.

In reply to by Arianna2001

If they have special techniques like Brass instruments do I would do the same for them as I would pizzicato violins. If there are no special techniques, like a flute then the instrument is all you would ever need.

Instruments like Harp, keyboards and many percussion have the ability to sing and play at the same time. You might need a second staff for those instruments if they sing and play at the same time. In that case you would use "Hide Empty staves" in the Style->General menu. In the case of unpitched percussion, you will have no choice but to use a second staff for the notes to be sung since it is impossible to put other clefs and notes to sing on an unpitched percussion staff. You would use Text on the staves as though the staves were a continuation of the other staff. For example, you would use the voice staff under the snare drum staff and put staff text that says "Voice" where the singing begins and "Snare Drum" where the musician returns to drums. If the musician does both at the same time, then you need to conned the two stave. Be aware that there is a bug that prevents barlines on percussion from displaying in some circumstances (#262397: Bar lines on pitched staves do not span the entire staff when bars are spanned down to a percussion staff and hide empty staves is used.).

I've attached a sample score showing what I would do.
Musician Singing Test.mscz

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