Using the concepts I’ve presented in the “Signal Flow and Music Notatation Software” blog posts, let’s look at an example of how to apply this to a real world notation situation.
My friend Pete Huttlinger is a fabulous guitar player and author of many excellent guitar books and videos. Pete uses Sibelius for his guitar arrangements and method books. He recently asked me how he could produce a page of chord diagrams in Sibelius but not show the staves. Pete wanted to take advantage of the chord diagrams in Sibelius and the spacing and layout that attaching the chord diagrams to a staff would provide but just end up with a page of chord diagrams and text.
What Pete needs for this project is to create an instrument or edit an instrument that has no staff lines, no bar lines, no key signature, no clef. Essentially he needs an ‘invisible staff’ that provides a framework to layout the page.
The signal flow that shows you the solution to this project is:
House style > Edit instruments > Instruments > Acoustic guitar [notation] > Edit instrument > Edit staff type > staff design: number of staff lines ‘0’ > Other Objects: uncheck Bracket, Initial clef & Key signatures / Tuning > Barlines: uncheck Initial barline & Barlines> Notes and Rests> Note Properties: uncheck Bar rests>okay and close back to score>click on meter (4/4) in bar 1 and delete
I’ll assume you can create a score with one stave that has acoustic guitar [notation] as the assigned instrument. And I’ll also assume you know how to create chord diagrams and you and can start with a page that looks like this:
Then just click on the staff (single blue box) and follow the signal flow I’ve outlined above. Start in the House Style menu and follow the steps to the Staff Type window. Here is where you can modify the instrument to have a staff with 0 staff lines, no other objects (clef etc), basically an invisible staff. When you are done you should have a page that looks like this:
The tip to learn from the project is:
Sibelius “Good to Know”: In Sibelius every stave is actually an instrument. So the staff attributes are controlled by the type of instrument assigned to that staff. Follow the signal flow from the staff to House Style > Edit Instrument to control your staff elements.