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Four-hand music

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Four-hand music

Postby Mouchette » Wed Nov 04, 2015 8:43 am

It would be excellent to have a four-hand music layout plugin. What would be perfect:
1. I write music on four staves, primo above secundo.
2. I mark the page turns where I want them (according primo's rests and so on). I activate the plugin, which:
- extracts and separates the two parts (left and right pages)
- alternates left and right pages in order to have the same number of measures on left and right pages in one file only
- re-do the measure numbering (1, 2, 3 on left pages, 1, 2, 3 on right pages, not 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 from left to right page))
- checks for cautionary key changings: a key changing on left page must not affect a right one!
(- links between "score" and "parts" are kept.)
Thanks!
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Re: Four-hand music

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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Luka Puka » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:12 am

That would actually be especially useful for piano duets on one keyboard. This post needs more attention.

:D
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby zuill » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:41 am

We had a thread on this over at the "old" MakeMusic forum some years back. Some of us even posted demo files.

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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Lothar Ochmann » Wed Jan 04, 2017 9:34 am

I tried to search inside the old forum in this way: site:forum.makemusic.com+"four-hands music". With quotes, without quotes: no success! :x And I also tried to find some threads of the last week: same result. :evil:
Hadn't Makemusik promised to us, that searching the old forum would be possible? :mrgreen:
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby HaraldS » Wed Jan 04, 2017 2:55 pm

Mouchette wrote:2. I mark the page turns where I want them (according primo's rests and so on). I activate the plugin, which:
- extracts and separates the two parts (left and right pages)
- alternates left and right pages in order to have the same number of measures on left and right pages in one file only
- re-do the measure numbering (1, 2, 3 on left pages, 1, 2, 3 on right pages, not 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 from left to right page))
- checks for cautionary key changings: a key changing on left page must not affect a right one!
(- links between "score" and "parts" are kept.)

Such a plugin would be a lot of work and changing a Finale file as you describe would result in a file being nearly uneditable for later changes. I would favor an approach from the other side: what's the problem with the normal way of writing a score and doing part extraction? Measure numbers and key changes would be at the right spot, if you regard each page individually. There are only two problems:
  • wrong page numbers, if you use the automatic counted page numbers
  • wrong printing order, if you print all parts and all pages one after the other
So I would suggest that a plugin for such a situation could:
  1. renumber the pages by creating new page number text blocks
  2. send the pages to the printer in the correct sequence: page1:blank / page2:secondo's first page / page 3:primo's first page / page4:secondo's 2nd page / etc. . Alternatively, a plugin could produce a PDF with the pages in printable order.
Wouldn't that solve the problem?

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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Peter Thomsen » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:01 pm

Take a look at the attached Finale document.

It shows a demo solution for “duets on one keyboard” - with the following properties:

1) The page orientation is Landscape - better for two players sitting next to each other.

2) The linked parts layout is correct - via inserting blank pages.
When printing the Primo part, print only the even numbered pages.
When printing the Secondo part, print only the odd numbered pages.

3) You must manually, yourself, make sure that the two parts have the same number of measures in each system - or at least on each page.
Also, consider page turns.
Usually the Primo does the turning in a casual setting, being closer to the page that turns (especially if the part is printed in Landscape format, which is best.
In concert performances, professionals will do what works.

4) Usually the Secondo pedals, but professional duetists may swap the pedaling depending on the musical circumstances.
Attachments
Piano 4 Hands Demo 2014.musx.zip
(85.26 KiB) Downloaded 9 times
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby zuill » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:21 pm

Peter,

That demo looks quite a lot like my demo from some years back. Like minds, I guess.

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Re: Four-hand music

Postby michelp » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:37 pm

Hello Mouchette,

Your pseudonym makes me suspect that you speak French.
If it is the case, you might want to take a look at the French-speaking forum "Finalisons ! (make sure you register to be able to read the FAQs).
Chris has created there many scripts for JW Lua, including this one http://finale-logiciel-aide-gravure-musicale.eu/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=5211&p=26800#p26800 (working in English or French versions of Finale) about specific page numbering issues. There is a link within the text to a FAQ dealing exactly with 4 hands piano music.
Michel
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Mouchette » Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:26 pm

I posted an answer, but it does not appear - I'm wondering why.
I said that I dont want to cheat with the program, as I used to do, twenty years ago, when I asked for a F clef here, and got it there... I don't want to turn around the difficulty. That's why the two solutions would surely not be convincing. Too many manual operations.
All the operations I've described are simple: they can be done by a serie of macros. That's why I'm asking for, and waiting for, an automatic plug-in, which could apply these macros, step by step.
I said also that we are in 2017. If it's possible to get into NSA programs, it must be possible to transform easily a four-staves music into a 4-hand score...
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Peter Thomsen » Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:30 pm

zuill wrote:Peter,

That demo looks quite a lot like my demo from some years back. Like minds, I guess.

Zuill

That demo is a summary of the most recent discussion in the (now locked) MakeMusic forum.
The demo combines the ideas from several forum members, including the ideas from you.
If I Recall Correctly, it was John Ruggero who recommended Landscape orientation.

I wanted the users here to save some time.
Instead of attempting a web search*) in the MakeMusic forum they can just study the attached demo here.

*) Web search was not a success for Lothar Ochmann (see the post 7 posts above this one).
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby zuill » Wed Jan 04, 2017 5:02 pm

Here's one of the "old forum" threads: http://forum.makemusic.com/default.aspx?f=5&m=442459

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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Mouchette » Wed Jan 04, 2017 5:38 pm

Thank you.
The various solutions, I mean their variety, prove that no one is really good. An automatic plug-in is necessary. A professional and modern engraving software should provide it.
You can answer that even in the late versions of Finale, the correct tuplet form (two "3" above the two first tuplets, and nothing after that) is not provided either. That you cannot change the default page format (Letter, A4, and so on). That a dot or a trill are not centered horizontally by default. And so on. A 4-hand plug-in can be less urgent...
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Peter Thomsen » Wed Jan 04, 2017 5:58 pm

Mouchette wrote:… even in the late versions of Finale, the correct tuplet form (two "3" above the two first tuplets, and nothing after that) is not provided either …

In My Humble Opinion, this is not a big deal.
When you have entered the two first two tuplets, you can go to Document Options > Tuplets, and change the default tuplet appearance to, not display the number.
Takes only a few seconds.


Mouchette wrote:… you cannot change the default page format (Letter, A4, and so on) …

Actually you can “change the default page format”.
It is just a matter of editing the page format.

By The Way:
It is not clear what you mean by your words “the default page format”, since there are several possibilities.
Please explain the exact steps you are following, what happens when you do so, and what does not happen that you expected to happen.
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Mouchette » Wed Jan 04, 2017 6:46 pm

I'd want to:
If I'm in a tuplet environment, I type two tuplets, the "3" appears", I type the following ones, the "3" does not appear anymore (this is a typo rule).
I'd want to:
open a new document, and find my format. But Document Options, which are incredibly poor, do not offer this possibility.
I'd want to:
move up a staff n°2 closer to the upper staf n°1, and see the cresc. marks, the f and p marks keep centered.
And any other things... I'll make a list, if you want...
(Finale is extremely good. It's why I'm so angry about it, sometimes. It's like when I can't find an eraser in Acrobat!)
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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Graeme Gilmore » Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:17 am

I use a method similar to that described in this thread but my process is a bit different. The advantage of this process is letting Finale determine how many measures will fit on each pair of pages. This is all long to say, but rather quick to do.

I start with a score with both the primo and secondo parts together in each system. Enter and edit as much as possible. Do not lock the systems.

Extract the primo and the secondo as separate files (not linked parts). This is necessary because blank pages will be inserted in different locations in each file. Linked files are better if you will be exporting them to a different program that can position them and add the correct page numbers.

The next step quickly lays out how many measures will fit on a page. Open two windows to see the primo and secondo parts at the same time in page view. Select and update the layout in each part. It is very easy to see which part must contain fewer measures on the first page. Manually adjust this part, if needed, to get the best layout. Lock the systems for the page. Cause the next measure to start on a new page and insert a page break.

In the other part, redistribute the measures among the systems of the page for best appearance. Lock the systems for the page. Put in a page break so that the same measure number starts page 2 in both parts.

Page one now has the maximum number of measures that will fit. Highlight page two forward in each part and update the layout. The part with the fewer measures that fit controls how many measures will be on that page. Continue on through the document.

When finished every page in both parts starts with a page break.

I don’t have access to a program that can import each Finale page and add the page numbers, so I use the following work-around within Finale.

Add a blank page before the first page of the Secondo part (this will be the title page and also forces the secondo to print on the left side). Continue adding blank pages so that each page that would be a “right page” is blank.

The primo part begins with the first page of the music and needs a blank page inserted after each page. Adjust the starting page number of the primo
It is then possible to duplex print the appropriate left or right pages into a single printed document with the expected page numbers showing.

The following FinaleScript makes adding blank pages very fast. To stop the Message from showing each time, put two forward slashes in front of it (//Message...)

// Inserting blank pages

Message: "Insert a blank page BEFORE the page number shown in the lower left next to the horizontal scroll bar."

page layout tool
menu item "Insert Blank Pages"

click "OK"
Graeme Gilmore


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Re: Four-hand music

Postby Mouchette » Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:56 am

Thank you.
It's how I do. Differences: I link the parts, and I don't add blank pages, because I prefer to print the two files in Acrobat, and cross the pages within Acrobat. Page numbers in Acrobat as well.
So, same answer: a plug-in would do all that easily. I would lock the page turns on right pages manually, and the macro would cut the left pages at the same place, would update layout, etc.
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