Sibelius: Suspended Roll Lengths

You can thank Murray Gusseck for these nuggets of wisdom, as he made aware of this feature some time ago.

NOTE: These only apply to Sibelius. Perhaps one of the Finale gurus can chime in with the appropriate solution in said program.

It's pretty simple actually. See the attached picture for where to find it - this is in the Properties window. As far as numeric values go, each beat=256 (regardless of tempo) so, just do some fancy math and figure it out.

For best results:
1) Play cymbal sound first
2) Observe how early or late the peak is in comparison to your desired result
3a) If it peaks early, add a value to it  -- e.g. two beats early enter 512
3b) If it peaks late, subtract a value from it -- e.g. 1.5 beats late enter -384

This will eliminate the need to have all sorts of hidden layers and extra rhythms.  Because no one likes a suspended cymbal roll that peaks early.
Thanks for posting this tip here Bryan! I imagine this is one of those things that most people haven't tapped into that can save them tons of time when dealing with finicky timings for suspended cymbal swells.
There's no picture attached (that I can see). I assume you're talking about the ";live start position"; parameter?

I discovered on my own last night that this method is extremely useful for cymbal rolls. Still, it doesn't address the issue of when the rolls start (although usually the end of the rol is much more important). Will there ever be a way in VDL/Sibelius to accurately start and end cymbal rolls as notated, for any tempo?
What browser are you running, Joe? There should be a thumbnail of the picture below my post, as well as a link to it. But yes, live start position is the feature that I'm talking about.

At this stage, I can't imagine that there will be a way to have a suspended cymbal start and end exactly where you want it to for every possible scenario. Even the more expensive, ";high end"; libraries don't offer features like that. However, I wouldn't put anything past Jim :-)

If you [i]really[/i] wanted to, I guess you could...

1) Write a Sustained Roll with a natural release on the point where you want it to start
2) Add a hairpin to the sustained roll (attached only to the layer in which the sustained roll resides).
3) Use the crescendo/decrescendo plugin to try and give it the shape you desire.  Perhaps values of 0 and 70 would do the trick.
4) Select the resulting expression text in those bars (I just type Alt, E, I, E which executes Edit > Filter > Expression Text), though you'll want to unselect any dynamic marking that you want to show up.
5) Write a normal cymbal swell that overlaps with the sustained roll and peaks at the desired place, using the above process.

This could all be accomplished, of course, using the old hidden layer trick and writing a non-playing version that looks good notationally. It would, however, require two hidden layers, rather than the usual one.
Good point - conceptually this just means writing two rolls: one that begins when you need it to begin, and the other that ends when you want it to end. The sustained rolls don't always mesh with the crescendo rolls, though.

Anyway, that's all a minor issue compared to the end not being in the correct place, which is what this post is about. I am running Firefox 3.0.11. I checked in IE8 and I don't see it there, either.
If you spent enough time with it, you could make it sound pretty convincing, but I don't think it'd be worth the time you put into it--unless it's for a pro recording or something.

As far as the attachments go, between the last line of my post and the italicized ";Last Edit"; text, I see a horizontal divider line, a thumbnail of an image, and a file name with the file size. Are you not seeing this? Is anyone else having this problem?
I am on Firefox and do not see it Bryan.
How about now? Should be functioning properly.

NOTE: Clicking on the picture makes it full size, clicking on the link gives multiple options e.g. open or download.
Yep, now I see it.
I see said the blind man.

No you don't said the deaf.

Works fine now :).
Sweeeeet I remember asking Jim Casella about suspended cymbal rolls at TMEA and now there's an answer! :)
Where did you go to find the edit passage pop up???
Hi SD,

As it mentions in the original post, this can all be found in the Properties window, or in the Inspector now in Sibelius 7.
ok thank you!
does this apply to any roll?  like will this work with gongs and concert bass drums?

I'm having trouble when I try to enter the template versions where they won't play back or they'll enter on a different line (like way above the staff).  I try putting the hash marks above concert bass and gongs but it end up sounding like and angry robot and makes babies cry. 

anyways, I appreciate you all and the insight you give.

Login or Signup to post a comment