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Guest Blog Series - Introducing Musician Martin J F Smith: Sibelius 6 -- Ready, Set, Compose, Part I

Only published comments... Aug 20 2010, 12:05 PM by Taryn Unruh

This month, we are featuring an exclusive four-part blog series from guest author Martin J F Smith. A musician for more than 40 years, Smith has a deep background in music and composition. He resides in the United Kingdom, where he serves as a songwriter, composer, and teacher. Today kicks things off with part one. Happy reading!



As a composer and teacher, I've quickly come to learn that Sibelius 6 is the flagship of music notation programs. Case in point:


  • -- Sibelius has consistently kept ahead of the game in this competitive field by providing the composer, arranger and music educator with reliable software, which is both innovative in its features and intuitive to use.
  • -- Its logical layout and function makes it ideal for newcomers-particularly for students-allowing music creation to take place after a far shallower learning curve than with some other programs.
  • -- The ease of use enables the serious composer to develop a smooth and efficient workflow, whether creating, arranging or editing music.


Throughout this blog series, I will expand upon the above points. But more importantly, I'll drive home the message that yes, Sibelius 6 can be easy to use and includes very basic modes, but it is also an extremely powerful tool that allows professionals to tackle even the most elaborate projects. 


So, how can you use Sibelius 6 to create beautiful scores? Well let's get started...


Sibelius 6 comes in a sturdy box, which includes a 745-page printed reference manual, as well as a 140-page printed handbook. To me, these are a welcome inclusion in an age when so many software companies deny the user "hard copies" of essential reading. I much prefer to sit down with a book than stare at a computer screen to read text. However, for those who do prefer electronic versions, these are also provided in PDF format via the help menu.


Installation and set-up is problem-free, and since I had plenty of space on my hard drive, I decided to install all the optional packages. These include: Sibelius Sounds Essentials, Scorch, Photoscore Lite, Audioscore Lite and Rewire.


Before I started the program, I connected my MIDI keyboard, via an Avid M-Audio Midisport USB interface. As soon as Sibelius 6 launched (after being greeted with the start music and welcome screen), I was impressed to find that my MIDI set-up had instantly been recognized.


After this simple set-up, you'll be ready to start creating music in no time. Next up, more insight into the in's and out's of composing music with Sibelius 6. Stay tuned.


**This series will continue next week, so check back in for more great content from Martin Smith here on the Avid Industry Buzz.**

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About Taryn Unruh

Taryn works for Formula PR. As a former Avid employee, Taryn remains passionate about the craft of storytelling, and tracks stories on related industry news, Avid customers and products.

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