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Adding slurs, hairpins, and other shapes

Adding intelligent shapes for phrasing, technique, crescendos, and decrescendos.

Hairpins, trill markings, slurs, and pedal markings are among the many musical figures that appear as shapes that need to be customized for each occurrence based on the corresponding music. Finale's Smart Shape tool allows you to easily add these markings and customize them with the click of a mouse.

In this lesson you will learn how to:

  1. Adding slurs
  2. Adding hairpins
  3. Adding piano pedal markings

Adding slurs

Use the Slur tool in the Smart Shape palette to add slurs. (The slur tool looks identical to the Smart Shape tool).

To add slurs

  1. Click on the Smart Shape tool .
  2. Select the Slur (in the Smart Shape palette).
  3. Double-click the first note (D) in measure 9, top staff. A slur extends to the next note.
  4. Add the remaining slurs in measures 9 and 11 (as shown here).

Slur editing techniques:

  • To edit a slur, use the five diamond editing handles
  • To extend a slur over multiple notes, double-click the first note and drag to the last note. Release the mouse button when the last note is highlighted.
  • To delete a slur, select its handle and press DELETE.

Noteman says: Slurs that have not been edited manually automatically adjust to avoid collision with notes. When you manually adjust a slur, its Engraver Slur qualities are lost.

Adding hairpins

Hairpins are used to indicate a crescendo or decrescendo, and are added with either the Crescendo tool or Decrescendo tool in the Smart Shape palette.

To add hairpins

  1. For ease of editing, choose View > Scroll View.
  2. From the Smart Shape palette, select the Crescendo tool .
  3. Double-click beat 1, measure 7, between the piano staves and drag to the marking.
  4. Repeat to enter a crescendo in the same measures above the vocal line. Use the diamond handles to create a wider or narrower crescendo.

Adding piano pedal markings

In addition to the common markings like slurs and hairpins, the Smart Shape tool has many other lines, as well as the ability to create your own. Using the Custom Line tool, we can easily add pedal indications for the piano.

To add piano pedal markings

  1. Choose View > Page View.
  2. CTRL-click on the Custom Line tool .
  3. Select the desired pedal figure.
  4. Click Select.
  5. Double-click and drag to enter the markings under measures 1-2 of the piano as shown below.
  6. Drag select the markings, right-click one of the selected handles, and choose Align Horizontally.

Adding slurs for melismas automatically

In this piece there are a number of additional slurs necessary over the word extensions (the melismas). Adding these manually can be a chore, requiring dashed slurs for the second verse. To save time, let's add these automatically using the Auto Slur Melismas plug-in.

To slur melismas automatically

  1. Choose the Selection tool .
  2. Press CTRL+A to select all.
  3. Choose Plug-ins > Lyrics > Auto Slur Melismas. Finale analyzes the score and adds the slurs automatically. There may be one extra dashed slur starting in measure 8 the extends to the end of the score. Let's remove that.
  4. Click the extra dashed slur starting in measure 8, top staff, and press DELETE.
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