Elektra: Pushing MuseScore 3 and MuseScore.com to its limits

• Sep 13, 2022 - 21:26

Elektra is an opera in one act by Richard Strauss. It's scored for an absolutely massive orchestra of about 110 players. A typical performance runs about 100 minutes. And I thought it would be a good idea to copy this opera into MuseScore. So fast forward about a year or so, and I am happy to present the first half of the opera: 75 staves, 1866 measures, and over 2000 KB. I've attached the file to this post, but download at your own peril: opening MuseScore takes significantly longer to open now, and even just looking around the score is bound to cause freezing. I'm also attempting to upload the score to the main website; a previous version just refused to upload correctly.

Attachment Size
ELEKTRA..mscz 2.01 MB


Nice job. One heck of a lot of work.
FWIW, I have an old laptop,i5, 8GB ram, and an SSD. It did take a bit to load. I have an sf2 version of the default HQ font. I didn't have any trouble moving around the score. On my system I could hardly hear the voices. I think this might be in part due to so many instrumental parts being doubled in the original. But no matter if it works on your system.

In reply to by bobjp

Respect to @mooing for this epic transcription!

I confirm what @bobjp says. On my (old) Lenovo laptop for example, it's quick to jump to a rehearsal mark or a measure number. The laptop is i7, 16GB, and an SSD (and it's the hard disk to SSD upgrade which transformed this tired old machine). The Elektra score opens in just over 1 minute - not bad.

One suggestion: in the Mixer all the instruments are panned dead centre, which means each "performer" is sitting on the same chair. It might sound clearer if the instruments were panned as in a symphony orchestra? Like this simple example:
Orchestra Layout 1.png

[EDIT] The attached score shows the result of panning the instruments and voices across the sound stage, using the Mixer.

Attachment Size
ELEKTRA with panning.mscz 2.01 MB

In reply to by DanielR

For me, there are about three and a half minutes between double-clicking the MS icon and the start center being interactable. I wonder if it's all the backups causing this. About the comments on the playback, I was only really focused on making the score look nice, but tweaking the mixer is a good call and simple enough to do, so thank you for doing that.

Oh, and the score is still being processed by the main site. Hopefully, it actually goes through.

In reply to by mooing

The panned score sounds better, and will help me to find potential wrong notes more easily. I'll check again when finishing the on-hand work. At my side Musescore opens it within 20 second on a high-config Dell computer and around half a minute on a braille laptop with 7th Gen Intel Core i5-7Y57 and 8GB Ram. Both moves with a bit delay, but is very comfortable to make any corrections.


In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

I also experience long start up times with MuseScore. I suspect that it has something to do with Windows caching things - or not - because if I close and restart Musescore it starts much quicker. I also get similar long start up times on other programs like Adobe reader and VLC but I haven't yet found the magic Windoze setting that might fix it - oh for the days of MS-DOS when I think I knew what my PC was doing.

OK--I have yet to click on the link (fear and trembling!), but I gotta ask . . .
What the aitch prompted you to undertake such a thing? Proof that MuseScore is the "real" music software it claims to be? Frustation that live performances of Strauss operas are so few and far between, or inability to purchase a decent recording? Lost your library card, and blocked from IMSLP? Or just way, way too much time on your hands?

FWIW, I got bored a couple months ago, but all I managed to squeak out were some orchestrations of short pieces by Satie, arranged for seven instruments!

(We all have our reasons for using MuseScore, and all of them are valid; but I'm always surprised how many folk seem to be copying scores of, say, a Chopin Ballade, when there are already countless editions already out there, many freely available on-line.)

So, before I look, I ask--what edition did you base it on? it sounds like you are more interested in the notation/engraving aspect than the playback, but I can't wait to hear what The Mighty Oohs and Aahs (MuseScore's repertory ensemble) does with this!

You said you started this about a year ago--remind me, was that before or after the launch of 3.6, and its "massive engraving improvements"? How did that affect work already done, or work going forwards?

Or as Klytämnestra says, "und meine Leber krank ist!"

In reply to by wfazekas1

OK--7 sec. to download, first time Musescore crashed, second time launched in about 35 sec. I'll admit, I hit "play" and immediately burst into gales of uncontrollable laughter--Christine Goerke and Deborah Voigt are not soon to be out of jobs.

That being said, I'm very, very, very, very, very Impressed! Beautiful work!

In reply to by wfazekas1

Absolutely way too much free time :)

The score is based on the only edition available on IMSLP: Berlin: Adolph Fürstner, 1916.

I think I did start before 3.6, but if I remember right, the transition went very smoothly. So real effects on my workflow that I can recall.

In reply to by mooing

Personally, the most expansive score I've created on MuseScore had a total of about 19 staves, with about sixteen or so visible on any given page. But one deficiency I could foresee when dealing with these very dense orchestral scores is MuseScore's inability to alter staff size on different pages--you're basically stuck with one size throughout. Did you find this to be at all an issue?
(One possibility, from a purely engraving standpoint, would be to create each page as a separate file--but then, where would that get ya?)

i downloaded this score and exported the .MIDI. in some parts the notes are represented as duration zero, so they dont sound.
like in the Horn in Eb, measure 567-579. i split the score to parts and exported the HornEb only; same result at the same spots.

Attachment Size
ELEKTRA-Horn-Eb.png 402.24 KB

what is wrong with Harp2 ?
when i export this part to .mid and open it in Musescore, i see notation from M 1236, but when i open the .mid in Cakewalk, the tracks are empty.

Attachment Size
ELEKTRA.-Harp_2.mid 7.13 KB

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