|Instruction manual - Pizzicato 3.6.2||EN810 - Revision of 2013/05/29|
Composition tools - The conductor view
Watch also the following videos:
The conductor view [Professional] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro]
The conductor view has been designed to be your music composition desktop. As you may have several scores in a music document (Pizzicato Professional only), there must be a tool to organize and manage them and to play them easily and in many combinations. This tool is the conductor view.
To work with the conductor view and so that the lessons happen as they should, we strongly advise you to switch on the menu option found in Windows, Windows management, Based on the conductor view. This mode is oriented around the conductor view and the examples and applications of the following lessons will behave the way they should. The other two modes have a different way to handle the windows behaviour.
- Start Pizzicato or close any open document and choose File, New. Pizzicato opens the conductor view. If you did not modify the windows management option as explained here above, you may open the conductor view by using the Windows, Conductor... menu. The following window appears:
This window is divided in two parts:
- The left part is the document manager and its configurations. You can get a full explanation in the lesson about the document manager. Its various configuration contain items representing instruments, music libraries and virtual keyboards as well as other musical objects that may be used to compose music. Each one of them will help you to compose and will be the subject of a specific lesson.
- In the main part of the window, you have a time scaled view of all the scores present in the document. This area is where you will add, remove, play and manipulate music scores. Its predecessor was the main view (still available). However, the conductor view has much more features to make your work more easy and it adds the time dimension of the scores.
This view has some particularities compared to other views :
- There is only one conductor view for each open document.
- When you open several conductor views (from different documents), they will resize themselves automatically to cover your screen so that you have an overall view of the open documents and their content.
The rest of this lesson will explain how to use the main area of the conductor view.
- The large orange rectangle represents one score named Score 1. Double-click inside this rectangle. The score appears above the conductor view. You will notice that a view that is called from the conductor view will always stay on top of it. As the conductor view covers the full screen, if it was not so the score view would go behind the conductor view whenever you would use the conductor view again. Close this score view now.
- With the right mouse, click on the orange rectangle. A context menu appears with several items:
- The first 8 items may be used to open a view of the score from which you call this menu. The first one calls the score view, which has the same effect as a double-click.
- The Play options... item calls the play options dialog box associated with the score. It is the same dialog that is called from the score view with the "..." button. You may change the tempo, the measures to play, the metronome,...
- The Change name... item lets you change the name of the score, which is here Score 1. The name of a score is displayed just on top of the orange rectangle.
- The next item lets you duplicate a score inside the document. You get a new independent score which is an exact copy of the original. You may then modify it as you want without affecting the original score.
- With the next item, you can create an alias of the score. An alias of a score looks like a copy of the score, but it has in fact the same content. It appears to be an independent score in the conductor view because you can move its rectangle without moving the original one. If you double-click it, you open in fact the original score. A score may have as many aliases as you want. The use of aliases will become more clear in the lesson on musical libraries. Basically, you will be able to organize a music composition by combining several scores and playing them together in the conductor view. If a score represents a percussion rhythmic pattern, you may need to use this score several times in your composition. If you duplicate the original score several times, the copies will be independent. If you decide to change the pattern, you will need to change them in each instance of the score. The other solution is to create one pattern and then make several aliases of it. The change in the original score will then be effective in each instance of its aliases. An alias score may be recognized by its name written in italic.
- The next menu item is used to delete the score. If the score is an alias, the alias disappear without confirmation, but if you delete an original score, Pizzicato ask for confirmation before deleting the score (this may not be undone).
- The next 4 items gives you a fast way to add measures to a score without opening it. The measures are added to the end of the score.
- The last menu item is used to add an audio track to the score. See the lesson on audio tracks later in the manual.
The five icons that you notice on the upper left border of the orange rectangle are in fact shortcuts to the most useful of the above menu items. With a simple click on these icons, you can:
- Icon 1 (little note): open the score view
- Icon 2 (sliders): open the instruments window with the sliders to control volume, reverberation,...
- Icon 3 ("+" on white background): create a duplicate of the score
- Icon 4 ("+" on yellow background): create an alias of the score
- Icon 5 ("x"): delete the score with a confirmation. If you also hold down the CTRL key, the score is deleted without the need of a confirmation.
Some of the above options can also be reached in the document manager. You can use both of them indifferently.
Let us apply this with some examples.
Using the conductor view [Professional] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro]
In the conductor view, a score is represented by a colored rectangle. The numbers in the upper part of the main area show the measure numbers of the score. Vertical lines separate the measures through the main area of the conductor view.
- Set the mouse position as follows:
- Click with the right button and select the New score menu item. A new score appears:
It is called Score 2 and its name is written in black. The active score title is displayed in red. Up to now, there was only one score and by default it was the active score.
- Click on the Score 2 rectangle:
- Its name becomes red, meaning that it is now the current score. The other score name is now in black. There may be only one score active in the conductor view. To set the active score, just click on it. You will also notice that the upper scale has moved. It is now displaying the measure numbers of Score 2. The new score has only one measure, but the scale continues after the last measure.
- By clicking on a score and moving the mouse while holding down the mouse button, the score may be moved inside the conductor view. In this way, you may dispose them to organize your music document as you wish.
- Double-click Score 2 and fill in the measure to have:
- Close this window. Use the recorder displayed in the conductor view to play this score. A black triangle follows the position of the playing in the conductor view:
When you use the recorder of the conductor view, it is the active score (with name in red) that is played.
- The H- and H+ buttons located to the left of the recorder may be used to horizontally zoom in and out. The main area shows more or less measures and lets you work more precisely or with an overall view of many measures.
Playing and grouping scores [Professional] [Composition Light] [Composition Pro]
The conductor view lets you play a score by selecting it and using the recorder. But you may also group different scores and play them together. Here is a simple example to show you how this view will help you compose and create music like a construction set game.
- Close the previous document and open the Ex082 example. You can find it in the document manager, configuration 2, in the examples folder. Open the conductor view by double-clicking the green icon of the example, which contains 3 scores:
- Listen to each one of them, one after the other. Also double-click and close them one after the other to see the score they contain. Each one has a different color. In the lesson on instruments, we will see that each instrument has a color code used to classify them more easily. We will now assemble the scores so that they may combine to create a little piece of music.
- A little bit below the first score, click the desktop background with the right mouse button. Select the menu item entitled New group of scores. In the next dialog, enter the name My composition and click on OK:
This new block is a group of scores. It may have four coloured squares in its top part. We will explain them further in this lesson. The group is now empty and we will drag scores into it.
- With the mouse, drag the Acoustic bass score into My composition and release the mouse button when the conductor view displays the following:
- Resize the group vertically by dragging its bottom right corner so as to have:
- With the mouse, drag the Rock - Rhythm score to have:
- Do the same with the last score, so that the group will become:
- Notice that the group has been resized horizontally so that it can contain the last score. The title of the group is displayed in red to show that it is the active group. Click on the START button of the recorder. The full score group plays, showing the progression of the group and of the individual scores with moving triangles:
- You may ask a group to play in an infinite loop. Click the group (not in a score, but in the blue part of it) with the right mouse button and select the Play in loop menu. If you display the menu again, you will see that this menu item is now checked:
- Start playing the group again. At the end of it, Pizzicato goes back to the beginning. To stop it, use the STOP button of the recorder or the space bar of the keyboard.
- We would like to use the Arpeggio 2 score two times. With the right mouse button, click on it and select the Play options... menu. The lower part of the dialog displays parameters that influence the playing of the score inside a group (Special play parameters) :
- In the third text box, enter "2" so that this score will be used two times. Close this dialog. The group now displays:
The group has been resized automatically. You can see that the Arpeggio 2 score now displays 4 measures. But there is in fact only 2 measures in the score (if you double-click it, the score view only shows 2 measures). The real measures are displayed in the original color and the additionnal measures are displayed in a lighter color to show the full duration of the score, taking into account the number of loops of the score.
Notice that if you drag the bottom right corner of the group while holding down the SHIFT key, any score that was reaching the right border of the group will be automatically multiplied to fit the new size of the group.
- You may also graphically determine how much times a score will be played. Click and drag to the right the bottom right corner of the Acoustic bass score, up to the moment it fills the entire group:
- Play the group. If you now want to use the Rock - Rhythm score in the last measure, without filling measures 2 and 3, we can not just extend the score. There are two ways to do this. You may duplicate the score if you want to modify it in any way. The duplicated score will be completely independent of the original score. Or you may create an alias of the score, in which case any change made to the original score will be automatically applied to the alias. Let us create an alias of this score, by clicking the score with the right mouse button and selecting Create an alias or by clicking on the "+" icon on yellow background. The group becomes:
- You can now move this alias to position it at the fourth measure. The vertical position is not important, except for the presentation of the group. The alias is shown in the same color, but its name is written in italic:
- You may notice that the score automatically adjust itself to the closest half beat, so that there will be no errors in positionning it. You may cancel this automatic grid by holding down the CTRL key while you drag the score (but the first click should be done without the CTRL key, because this has another meaning that will be explained in another lesson). Play the group again. In the playing parameters dialog box, there is also the time multiplication and division factors. Scores inside a group automatically play with the same tempo, but if the time factors are modified for one score, this score will then play using those factors. Call the dialog on the original Rock - Rhythm score and set the multiplication factor to "3" and the division factor to "2". Close the dialog. The group is now:
- The original score has been scaled to show its real duration with regard to the other scores. Play the group. You will hear that the measure rhythm is stretched in a 3/2 ratio. In this case, the effect is not especially wonderful. But it could be used to fit a free piano solo into a specific duration. You may also adjust this time factor manually by dragging the bottom right part of the score while holding down the SHIFT key. Stretch this score to cover two and a half measure. Notice that here also a grid adjusts the length of the score to the closest half beat. You may avoid this by holding down the CTRL key while moving. The group becomes:
- In the play options dialog, a menu lets you select how versions of the measures will be played (the measures need to have more than one version for this). A group may be moved on the desktop, exactly as you move a score. The scores contained in it will move with it. When the group is active or when one of its scores is active, the upper scale displays the measure numbers of this group. They are based on the measures visible on the highest score of the group. When a group or one of its score is active, you can see a green arrow showing the beginning of it in the upper scale. This arrow has a vertical line attached to it. It shows the location at which the playing of the group will start. You can set this green arrow by clicking with the left mouse button inside the scale area. Click for instance at the beginning of measure 4, inside the white band showing the measure numbers. The conductor view displays:
- Play the group. It will start at that point and will then loop again to that point when it reaches the end. The end point is by default the end of the group, but you may set a red arrow to determine another end point. Click with the right mouse button inside the measure number area, on the third beat of the fourth measure. Play the group and you will see that the loop is played between the green and red arrows:
You may change the position of the arrows while the group is playing. To remove the stop arrow, click it outside the group limits.
- The upper left border of the blue area may contain up to 4 coloured squares. The first and third are reserved for the real time arranger. We will come back to it in a specific lesson. The second square is active in red by default. It maintains the score group active all the time, even if you manipulate scores inside it. In such a way, by using the shortcut to play (space bar) it is always the full group that will play and not just the last selected score. By disabling this box (by clicking on it), it becomes gray and then by clicking on one of the score, it becomes red and active so that you can play just that score without the rest of the group. The green box is used to create a single full score that contains every individual score of the group. It is then quite useful to finalize the full arrangement. To use it, just click on the green box and drag to a free area of the music desktop and a new socre will be create at that place. You get for instance:
We have explained here how to use the conductor view to arrange and dispose a music composition. Even if the example is very simple, it shows the mechanics of it. In the next lessons, we will explain the use of instruments, of the music generators and other music objects and also the use of music libraries in combination with what we have seen here. Be sure you understand this lesson before continuing to the next one.