Conversion from .mxl resulting in formatting issues

• Aug 8, 2022 - 08:53

I've been tasked with re-orchestrating a piece I wrote several years ago when I was using Sibelius, and the easiest solution seemed to be to export the Sibelius file as an .mxl file and open it in MuseScore. In some ways, this has worked very well, but in other ways, it has resulted in several formatting issues.

I've attached the first section of the piece. The issues that are really bothering me:
- There seems to be extra space between the instrument names and the staves, more than MuseScore usually has. This is a small irritation, and I can adjust this quite easily in the Style menu, but it still seems like an odd thing to get lost in translation.
- Hairpins and dynamics are regularly getting in the same space as notes, particularly in the piano part. Again, I can adjust this, but it's much more time consuming.
- Again in the piano part: Accidentals are routinely overlapping with barlines and other notes. This seems like it would be a pain to adjust manually, and definitely something that shouldn't be happening.

I'm not asking for help manually adjusting these issues—unless you have any shortcuts, I suppose. What I'm asking for is if it is possible to "reset" the formatting, to make MuseScore function the way it normally does without having to manually adjust these problems.

Attachment Size
For All Flesh is as Grass - Rev2.mscz 38.94 KB


Indeed formatting in genereal is not part of the MusicXML.

But try Ctrl+A, Ctrl+R to reset all elements' positions to their defaults in one go.

On top select the subtitle and press Ctrl-R there too , seems Ctrl+A doesn't select anything from frames

Also after that for every voice staff right-click a dynamic, select all in same staff, press X, to move them to above the staff. Do the same for hairpins.

Attachment Size
For All Flesh is as Grass - Rev2.mscz 34.55 KB

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Another thing I've tried: Style > Reset All Styles to Default. But this doesn't seem to do as much as it should. For example, the measure numbers (to my eye, at least) are far bigger than they should be. Easily adjusted, but something that "Reset All Styles to Default" would seem to address, as I'm pretty sure this is not the MuseScore default.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Closing and reloading did not seem to have much (if any) effect.

I tried an experiment: I created a brand new MuseScore file, changed the key and time signatures to match the original score, and copied and pasted from the old score to the newly created one. My hope was that the musical material would copy, but the formatting would default back to what it should be. No luck. The accidentals are still overlapping with barlines and notes, and dynamics/hairpins are still overlapping as well. It's almost as if the notes and text elements themselves have a corrupted formatting.

(Sorry, I don't know coding or the backend of MuseScore, so I may be using the incorrect terminology.)

Could be useful to see the MusicXML file that led to this, in order to understand how it happened. But it's extremely strange. The problem - one I've never seen before - is that somehow the "chords" here are set to invisible, even though the notes themselves are all visible. This is confusing the heck out of automatic placement, as that isn't supposed to be possible. And because it wasn't supposed to be possible, I don't know of a way to fix it short of editing the MSCX file. But, that's the solution here. Save your MSCZ as MSCX, open in a text editor, and remove all lines of the form visible 0 /visible (plus appropriate angle brackets, I can never remember how to tell this forum not to interpret them as code).

I've attached a version here. Sorry for the oddly provocative filename :-)

Attachment Size
flesh-visible.mscx 516.74 KB

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Thanks so much for your help with this, and I have included the original xml file of the entire piece, pre- re-orchestration. But I do have two questions.

  1. I've already completed the re-orchestration of the piece, so it would be SUPER helpful if I could convert the MuseScore file to xml, then edit the code, then convert it BACK to MuseScore—otherwise, I'd have to re-notate the new parts. Is this possible, or do we need to go back to the original xml file?

  2. I don't really know coding at all, so while I'm happy to try to do this, it would be helpful to have much more specific, step-by-step instructions. Would you (or someone else) mind helping with this? (Honestly, I'm not even sure what text editor to use. I use MacOS Monterey, and I downloaded Brackets, but I'm happy to use something else if that's recommended.)

Thanks again.

Attachment Size
An American Requiem - Rev2.mxl 318.39 KB

In reply to by chrismassa1

It imports with a log of invisible notes in the Piano staff

  1. You can sure export to MusicXML, if you find that helpful, I just don't understand why?
    The original XML was requested to investigate how the problem started.
  2. To fix this formatting issue save as mscx instead of mscz, then use a plain text editor to delete those bogus <visible>0</visible> lines (or just replace that 0 with a 1)

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

I don't need to edit the MusicXML file to fix the problem? Sorry, I misunderstood.

So, if I delete the 0visible> lines, is that all I need to do? After I do that, do I save it as another kind of file so MuseScore will open it?

Any recommendations on what Mac-compatible text editor I should use?

THANK YOU ALL SO MUCH! I still have little to no understanding of what I just did, but it made everything better. Seriously, thank you.

In reply to by Are Jayem

Doesn't help much if the original score in a Sibelius format...
But in either case, Sibelius and Finale, there is the Dolet plugin, which is said to produce better MusicXML output

The above .mxl reads:

   <software>Sibelius 7.5.1</software>
   <software>Direct export, not from Dolet</software>
   <encoding-description>Sibelius / MusicXML 3.0</encoding-description>

I'm very grateful for all the help I've gotten on this thread, however, I've run into another problem. I've gone through the code and edited it, but I must have made some mistakes, because now MuseScore is unable to open the file. And to make matters worse, the file is too big to attach here. I know this is a terribly vague question, but are there any suggestions for what to look for to make it a viable score again? Or would anyone be willing to let me email it to them directly for them to take a look at it?

Any help would be much appreciated. I hate to think that hours of work on this project are lost.

In reply to by chrismassa1

Ah, I see. Well, I can tell you the pretty simple and foolproof way I created that, and maybe you can then try again on a backup copy of your score (or simply re-import the XML):

1) save as MSCX
2) open in your favorite text editor
3) global find and replace - find "<visible>0</visible>", replace with "" (i.e., nothing)
4) save

In reply to by chrismassa1

Definitely do not simply replace all 0's! Only 0's that appear surrounded by "visible" tags should be replaced. So you still have to search on the same string I mentioned, but now you have to replace it by <visible>1</visible>. That's actually more work than simply replacing the string with nothing.

In reply to by chrismassa1

Worse that happens is, something that was "supposed" to be invisible is not visible, and you'll have to hit "V" to make it invisible again. I'm not sure there really are any legit cases for invisible elements coming in via MusicXML though - probably anything set invisible in a MusicXML file really should have been handled via other means in MsueScore. Anyhow, the posted example didn't any such cases that I saw.

In reply to by chrismassa1

Please elaborate on: 1) what 'code' did you go through, and what editing did you do?, 2) when MuseScore is asked to open your file (score?), does it produce an error message, and what is that message?, 3) since the file is not attached, how big is it, actually, if you can't upload it to this thread?.

I WELL know that hours work of any kind is a real bummer to loose. I trust you still have the original score in Sibelius, and possibly the .MXL that you exported. Right?

Suggestion: there is significant benefit to make ==backups== of files during the various actions taken. When your whole score gets into MuseScore and seems to be working fine, then AND ONLY THEN can you consider removing the incremental backups.

I regularly start with piano_song.mscz (let's say) and first save to piano_song_safe1.mscz. Then when I do something significant to piano_song.mcsz - like changing a flute to a clarinet - I'll then save to piano_song_safe2.mscz... I have some MuseScore files that have up to 6 'safe' backups, incrementally done. The ounces of prevention are worth the pounds of cure. Just A Suggestion....... Good luck.

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