Announcing "Mastering MuseScore," the definitive guide to MuseScore 2

• Jun 10, 2015 - 21:25

Back in February, Thomas announced a plan for documentation for MuseScore 2 that included a new book I was writing. As you may have seen if you subscribe to the MuseScore newsletter , this book, entitled Mastering MuseScore , is now available for sale !

Please excuse the commercial annnouncement, but I hope you will be as excited about this as I am.

As most of you know, the online Handbook that has provided the core of the documentation for MuseScore is community-sourced, which is a great thing in many ways. However, a number of people have expressed a desired for more comprehensive documentation. Over the past two years, at the urging of Thomas, Nicolas, and Werner (the core MuseScore team), I have been working hard on this project. Now, 400+ pages later, "Mastering MuseScore" is completed, and I couldn't be more proud of it.


This book provides an in-depth discussion of virtually every aspect of MuseScore 2 - every type of score element, every setting in every dialog box, the user interface itself, and a wealth of useful but non-obvious tips for improving your workflow. I start with the very basics, walking you step-by-step through entering the music and lyrics for "Mary Had A Little Lamb." I then gradually move on to features like tuplets, repeats, copy/paste and the new Selection Filter, text formatting, linked parts, tablature, percussion notation, early music notation, page layout, playback, customizing your palettes, and much more. Again, virtually every feature of MuseScore 2 is covered, with clear explanations and plenty of examples.

I think it is safe to say that if there is any aspect of MuseScore you are wondering about, "Mastering MuseScore" will answer your questions. And even if you know the program pretty well, chances are there are a few surprises to be found. I know I learned more than a thing or two in the process of writing this book!

Best of all, by purchasing "Mastering MuseScore," you are supporting the further development of MuseScore itself. While I am the author, the book is published by MuseScore BVBA, the company comprising Thomas, Nicolas, and Werner. Proceeds from sales benefit each of us directly, and of course, that means it benefits all of you indirectly as we can improve our focus on adding features, fixing bugs, and making MuseScore even easier to use.

Need more convincing? Here are some a couple of reviews from professionals in the field:

Mastering MuseScore, the user-friendly guide to MuseScore - by noted notation software expert Philip Rothman for the independent Sibelius blog

Mastering MuseScore by Marc Sabatella - by music technology guru Christopher J. Russell for Technology in Music Education

Check out the reviews on Amazon as they become available, too! The first is by our own Steven Otto, who along with David Bolton, Tony Mountifield, Joachim Schmitz, Mark Stanton, and Isaac Weiss, helped proofread the book and make sure it is as clear, accurate, and thorough as it should be.

You can order "Mastering MuseScore" for yourself on Amazon . Volume discounts (eg, for educational institutions) are also available if you Freelinking: Unknown plugin indicator .

Order Now


For some reason, David's review isn't appearing for me.

FWIW, I penned one two days ago. Today, I had to rebut a comment from someone who had a serious misapprehension about the nature and accessibility of documentation for MuseScore.

I, too, look forward to reading further reviews.

Marc Sabatella, I really think you should submit this to iTunes if you haven't already. More people would buy it and it would be easier to read some of it on the go. As an iTunes user, it would be nice to just be able to by the book and start reading it instantly. P.S. Congrats on finishing this book. I think this will be the best book ever! MuseScore is just such an awesome program! I can see these headlines in the future now: "MuseScore Buys Sibelius!" :)

Hi Marc. That's exciting news. I too would also like an Itunes version, for multiple reasons, mostly revolving around how my computer area is set up and the lack of space in a small 1 bedroom appartment.



In reply to by pedrith

Thanks for the suggestions. We are definitely considering an electronic version. There are a number of technical issues to address first. It's a lot harder to make an ebook for something like this, with lots of use of graphics, floating figures, table layouts, etc, than for a plain text novel.

In reply to by Isaac Weiss

Text would be pretty small, though, especially on 7" tablets, or else you'd need to be scrolling around. Plus, there would then be digital rights management issues to figure out. The ebook is the better solution, and the technical issues aren't insurmountable - they just won't be solved today.

Got my copy a week or so ago. I keep it at The Big Chair to browse while I'm away from my PC. This book is very well done.

It's great to have a real, no-kidding, printed manual.


I ordered the book and I am ever so glad that I did. The book is GREAT! I haven't put a review on Amazon but I am on my way over there now to do just that.

What version does it cover? What has been added to Musescore that's not in the book?

I'm thinking about getting this book because there's nothing like paper in you hands to walk you thru processes and programs. Hard-copy is always better than screen copy.

Plus, there's an added psychological benefit: when an application has an accompanying BOOK, it gives the software more gravitas, and makes people think it's much more widespread than it is. And that's hard to do, especially for open-source software. Good idea publishing a book, and hopefully this will get more people to notice this little gem you've fashioned. ;)

In reply to by harbinger

The book is current for 2.0.1. The list of features added since then (for 2.0.2) is quite small; see the announcement on the main page of this site. Not sure if we'll update the text any time soon, but I do plan to do so for 2.1 whenever that happens - still a ways off yet.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

I'm really thinking about to buy it, but I have some doubts about the page formatting.

I just want to say: if it is like the today downloadable PDF Help book... Mm... I think it needs a good revision.

Anyway, it is a very necessary text on any musician library.



In reply to by Isaac Weiss

Very good news!!!

I'll try to get it one, soon.

BTW: How can I get the "original" source of the online handbook? I mean, I guess it was a "text" document (maybe LibreOffice, or OpenOffice, or MS Word) first, before became a PDF file. Or... Am I wrong? ???



In reply to by jotape1960

Amazon provides a "Look Inside" feature that should give you some idea at least. It is not based in any way - content or formatting on the online Handbook or the PDF version. The page formatting is much more what you would hope for an actual book as opposed to a set of web pages that got converted to PDF :-)

I bought my copy as a way to support Musescore, while getting something to explore Musescore features while offline. Even though it could be, this is not my reference when I'm at my PC.

In reply to by BobF_

Marc, I'm a technical writer and technical writing instructor at Humber College in Toronto. I specialize in print and online formatting, as well as, quality and production.

If you ever have any future questions about style or formatting in general, please feel free to send me an email message. Meanwhile, from the Amazon previews, it looks like you have a great publication! Well done, sir!

- Lee

In reply to by Lee Batchelor

Thanks! For the record, we used LaTeX, with the default "book" document class settings except for page size & margins which were as per Amazon's supported trim options. I used a number of additional packages and created a lot of my own custom definitions on top of that, but the basic formatting is standard LaTeX / book.

I am a Sibelius user, reseller and trainer, but am now advising potential clients to use MuseScore, as Sibelius has become SO expensive, and there are other issues that concern me, but that is besides the point. So I will "up my game" and start working with MuseScore so I can do some training (although you do have excellent videos). My clients like a one-on-one training session and we use Teamviewer for that. My question is: Will "Mastering MuseScore" also come out in PDF format (soon)? I live in South Africa and therefore shipping is quite expensive.

Congratulations on a GREAT PRODUCT, i.e. MuseScore as well as the book - I had a peep!!

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