Multiple notes on one staff

• Oct 14, 2008 - 15:42

Alright, I've recently started really learning how to use MuseScore and so far I like it MUCH better than I ever did Finale Notepad when I was in school.

The only issue I've come up with so far is that it appears that to place multiple notes of varying lengths on the same beat and staff is to change which voice the note is in. For example, I'm writing a piano accompaniment and in the treble clef on beat one and two I have two 1/4 notes (g and b) on top and a 1/2 note below that (e) and it won't let me do that unless I change the voice.

Am I missing something or is it really supposed to be like that? If it's really supposed to be like that I'm sure I'll run into a situation where it will be useful eventually. I just don't understand it right now.


That is correct. Multiple notes of varying lengths must be assigned to different voices.

To notate your example, you would enter g and b in voice 1, then click voice 2 and click the half note duration and enter the e.

What you might call "single-staff polyphony" occurs in a lot of music: orchestral scores will often have two-parts on one stave, contrapuntal music (fugues are a good example), 4-part chorales are sometimes notated with 2 staves, soprano and alto on the top staff and tenor and bass on the bottom. Even though you're writing music for piano, there can be some distinction between notes such that it sounds like separate voices, even if played by the same hand.

I thought of another way especially if your accompaniment is more chordal than like voices. Enter chords with repeated notes tied together so that it is equivalent to having different note durations. However it won't look nice or correct if it is supposed to be broken into more than one voice.

Thanks for the info. I'll probably just keep putting everything in separate voices. It's working out well so far. Caught me by surprise the first time I went to put a note in under the first one and it changed the whole thing!

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