Importing VDL Staff Types into Existing Documents

Anyone know of a way to import VDL2 staff types into an existing Sibelius document? 

I looked on the forum but didn't find anything for this specific topic so hopefully this isn't too redundant...

Basically I want to take a band directors score which is already formatted (reh marks, double bars, etc) which already has perc staves on it (but are mapped to gen midi sounds) and import the staves from my VDL2 template...when I highlight the staff and go to change it, the VDL2 staff options don't show up as they do from the VDL2 another question would be, can you import all of those selections into the Sibelius library / house style / etc. (drop into a folder or something)?

Basically I am trying to avoid doing this the other , much longer way of importing/adding the wind instruments to my VDL2 template and having to basically create the whole score from scratch...

Using: Sib 4.1


Hey Jeff. Welcome to the forum!

In theory, you could do this by exporting (staff type and noteheads) ";house styles"; from the VDL2 template, then importing that into your band score. In reality, this is not very reliable. It should work, but I think with the fact that the VDL2 template contains so many different percussion staff types as well as extra noteheads (which are called upon by the special staff types), I've never seen it successfully import.

In your scenario (which is the same as mine with corps/band stuff), I simply open my own template (with all the correct staff types) and simply add the various wind staves. Once you have that, save it as your new template. Then all it is is a matter of creating key sigs, time sigs, rehearsal marks, double barlines to match up with the score of the wind arranger. Once that's done, you can do a simple copy and paste from their score into yours and it should be all formatted correctly. It sounds like a lot of extra work, but it's really not that bad. Certainly beats all the time I've wasted trying to figure out why that house style import thing hasn't seemed to work.

Once you've  set up this score to work for you the first time, you don't really have to do it again. You can simply do a ";save as"; with it, and build your next chart off the same one as a template. The only thing you'll have to repeat with each chart is the process of assigning keys, time sigs, reh marks, etc before doing the cut/paste. I find it's helpful to print out the wind chart to have on hand while I'm doing this part so you don't have to keep switching scores on screen.
I created my own house style that has the VDL2 staff types and it always works just fine when I import. Does that mean I've just been lucky so far?
Interesting. I first noticed it in Sibelius 3 when we were doing templates for the first version of VDL. When Sib4 came out, I recall the problem still occurring, but maybe it's been addressed in one of the maintenance releases along the way. I won't have time to verify this anytime soon, but I hope I stand corrected! :)

If anyone decides to look into this, be sure to pay close attention by comparing how many noteheads exist in your blank score (the one you're importing into, as well as the one with all the VDL2 settings) BEFORE importing (check by going to 'edit noteheads'). Then once you've imported, see if the import process has created duplicates of the already-existing noteheads (1-24 for example).

Keep in mind, many noteheads in the VDL template will [i]look[/i] identical...that's intentional. This is because Sibelius will not allow a common notehead to share a common space/line while accessing more than one midi pitch. But in looking for ";duplicates,"; I mean checking the actual [i]name[/i] of the noteheads. If identical notehead names exist, it creates all sorts of chaos when you copy/paste music from one staff to another if one of the staves contains staff types containing these noteheads. Essentially it ends up copying all noteheads from the assigned staff type to the master set of noteheads in your score each time you copy/paste, which (after learning this the hard way) can add up to thousands of noteheads, and majorly bogging down Sibelius. This was a couple years ago when we discovered this (thanks to the help of Key Poulan). It wasn't something I was prone to keeping tabs on, so maybe just consider this something to keep a lookout for.

Good luck!
Hey Jeff - welcome to the forums!
Login or Signup to post a comment