Frequently Asked Questions

Bell Sound for Finale

Subject: [FFFinale] Bell Sound for Finale Playback
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2003 11:40:46 EDT

Greetings all!

Several FFF'ers have asked me to share a way to get music entered in Finale to appear at "on the page" as we write it but sound an octave higher than written on playback.  Here's what I do:

1.  Select WINDOW.
3.  Under Staff 1 Click the arrow under INSTRUMENT and scroll to find "New Instrument" and select it.
4.  In the INSTRUMENT DEFINITION window, highlight the default name (usually "Instrument" followed by a number).  Type "Handbells."
5.  Under "General MIDI" choose #9: Celesta (or any other instrument sound you want yo use).
6.  Do the same for Staff 2, but select the newly created "Handbells" Instrument.

Return to your score.

1.  In Scroll view, select the STAFF Tool.
2.  Double-click a measure in the treble clef of your score.  The STAFF ATTRIBUTES menu will appear.
3.  Click the TRANSPOSITION button.  The STAFF TRANSPOSITION Menu will appear.
4.  From the STAFF TRANSPOSITION Menu, select KEY SIGNATURE, scroll down to OCTAVE DOWN and select.
5.  Click OK twice, once for the STAFF TRANSPOSITION Menu and once for the STAFF ATTRIBUTES Menu.

The entire treble clef now appears an octave lower.  Don't panic.

6.  Highlight the entire treble clef from beginning to the end of your manuscript, including any and all bells used/chimes used measures.
7.  Select the MASS MOVER Tool.
8.  Select MASS EDIT.
9.  Under TRANSPOSE select UP.
10.  Under INTERVAL select OCTAVE.
11.  Click OK.

 Your music should now appear in your score where you wrote it, and when youplay it back from the computer it should sound an octave higher than written.

Happy Finale-ing!
Arnold Sherman
Tyler, Texas


I tired Arnold's transposing tricks, but in Finale 2003, all this was already done for me if I use the set up wizard and add a handbell staff.

By the way if you follow his instructions, but reverse the octave in staff attributes and the transposition in mass mover (edit) you can make your organ pedal staff sound like an organ pedal staff.

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