Voices

Updated 7 months ago
This is an archived handbook page written for Musescore 1
Navigate to the handbook page for Musescore 2: Voices

Voices allow you to have notes on a single staff which start at the same time, yet have different durations. Voices are sometimes called 'layers' in other notation software.

In a polyphonic measure, voice 1 takes the up-stem notes and voice 2 takes the down-stem notes

Instructions

  1. Start by entering the top voice (all the up-stem notes). When you enter the notes, some may have down-stems. You do not need to worry about the stem direction at this point, because they will flip automatically when you add the second voice.
    Voice 1 notes
  2. If you are using a computer or MIDI keyboard to enter notes (instead of the mouse), use the key to move your cursor back to the beginning of the staff (or measure)
  3. Click on "Voice 2" button Voice 2 button
  4. Enter all the bottom voice notes (all the down-stem notes). When you are finished, it should look like this:
    Voices 1 and 2

When to use voices

  • If you need stems pointing in opposite directions within a chord on a single staff
  • If you need notes of different durations within a single staff, played simultaneously

Hidden spacer rests

Only the rests of voices 2/3/4 can be deleted, not those of the main voice (1 - blue), they can be only hidden.
voice selector
To hide a rest, right-click on the rest and select Set Invisible. If you have DisplayShow Invisible marked, the rest still shows in gray on your screen. The hidden rest will not appear if you print.

External links