Noteflight

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Noteflight is an online interactive graphical music-notation editor. Musical notes are entered either by typing pitch names on the computer keyboard (fast), or clicking on the staff lines (slow). However, the program can be used from any operating system which has a web browser that can run Flash, since the program is written in Adobe Flash. MIDI keyboard entry is possible with the premium version of the software.

Detailed instructions for creating music notation using Noteflight are given below for four short notation examples. A useful summary of the keyboard commands are given in this one-page handout:

All of the instructions below and the keyboard summary are also collected into the following PDF file for printing convenience:

  • Single PDF of all tutorial materials on this page.

An advantage of Noteflight over most other notation software is the ability to display interactive musical notation on any webpage without the need for additional plugins, as demonstrated in the example below. Try clicking on the play button located in the top left of the example window. Click on the "noteflight" logo to go to the noteflight webpage for this particular example.

You can post noteflight music on a webpage like this by setting the option in the noteflight editor menus: "Anyone can view this score" found within the sharing tab. Then from the bottom of the sharing tab menu, copy the <object> code and paste it into your webpage. To include the above example on this page, the following code was copy/pasted into the page from the noteflight website:

<object width="725" height="220">
   <param name="movie" 
          value="http://www.noteflight.com/scores/embed">
   </param>
   <param name="FlashVars" 
      value="id=727a728b16c697d4c94cb2eb36d5efe96d5c7598&scale=1">
   </param>
   <embed src="http://www.noteflight.com/scores/embed" 
          type="application/x-shockwave-flash" 
          FlashVars="id=727a728b16c697d4c94cb2eb36d5efe96d5c7598&scale=1"
          width="725" 
          height="220">
   </embed>
</object>

Similarly, you can email a link directly to the music, such as Mary Had a Little Lamb by copying the http://www.noteflight.com/scores/view/... link in the sharing tab menu, such as:

  http://www.noteflight.com/scores/view/bfd2fa572ee34edec53e4dff3e57576c3600e77d


1 Exercises

  • Exercise 1: Note Entry and Lyrics
Basic note and lyric entry.
  • Exercise 2: Octaves, Slurs, Fingerings and Text
A demonstration of how to add fingerings, slurs as well as dealing more with octave transposition during data entry on the computer keyboard.
  • Exercise 3: Chords
A demonstration of how to enter chords.
  • Exercise 4: Upper and Lower Voices
A demonstration of how to place multiple voices onto a single staff.
Description Exercise 1 Exercise 2 Exercise 3 Exercise 4
Instructions: musescore1.pdf musescore2.pdf musescore3.pdf musescore4.pdf
Online result: ex1 ex2 ex3 ex4
PDF file export: ex1.pdf ex2.pdf ex3.pdf ex4.pdf
MusicXML file export: ex1.xml ex2.xml ex3.xml ex4.xml
MIDI file for listening: ex1.mid ex2.mid ex3.mid ex4.mid
MIDI file for data transfer: ex1data.mid ex2data.mid ex3data.mid ex4data.mid
HE-AAC audio export ex1.m4a ex2.m4a ex3.m4a ex4.m4a
  • After you create an account on Noteflight enter the above musical exercises in your account.
  • Export your music as MusicXML data and load into MuseScore, Finale or another music notation program that can read MusicXML files.
  • Load a MusicXML file created in another program into Noteflight.
  • Browse through music created/entered by other people on the website by clicking on the "Browse" button at the top of your account's page.
  • Go to this page of the Maple Leaf Rag by Scott Joplin, and add it to your favorites: http://www.noteflight.com/scores/view/727a728b16c697d4c94cb2eb36d5efe96d5c7598
  • Look at the examples in the PDF file for additional exercises to get more practice with data entry in Noteflight. Hints for concepts not presented in the above four exercises are give in the PDF file.

2 Links