Creating MIDI messages in Sibelius
Because Sibelius reads almost all markings in your score and automatically turns them into appropriate
MIDI messages when playing back ( 4.2 Interpretation of your score), you’ll generally
only need to enter messages manually in Sibelius in very specific circumstances. These include
changing the sound of a staff mid-way through a score, e.g. when, say, a clarinetist doubles on saxophone
in the same piece, or if you need to use a different sound for different timbres on the same
instrument, e.g. muted and unmuted. The clearest way to do this is to define a new word in the
playback dictionary ( 4.9 Playback dictionary).
However, you can also tell Sibelius to send any MIDI message you like at any point, by typing it in
as text using the simple MIDI message commands described below.
These MIDI messages can be appended to ordinary text and are hidden, so if you write 2nd time
molto vibrato ~C1,90 in, say, a repeated section of your music, Sibelius will reset controller 1
(modulation) to zero to silence the staff at the exact point where 2nd time molto vibrato appears
on the printout. ~C1,90 is automatically hidden (and will disappear completely if View Hidden
Objects is switched off – so it’s a good idea to switch this on before working with MIDI messages).
If you need to mute lots of staves, you can of course copy 2nd time molto vibrato ~C1,90 using
Alt+click or -click to save you retyping, or you can add it to the word menu obtained when you
right-click (Windows) or Control-click (Mac), and assign it a keyboard shortcut at the same time
– 3.1Working with text.
4. Playback & video
When you import a MIDI file, you can choose to have MIDI messages in the file written into your
score, in which case any control changes etc. will appear as if you’d typed them in yourself.