ForScore and seven years ago...
Hi everyone, and welcome to my very first blog post for DanRadzVoice.com! Thank you for reading this far into my post!
I have had several students ask me about the best software to use for music reading and editing on their iPad. Several of my students will use their iPad for music reading, and default to using the iBooks app, which does the job, but I offer to you a better solution.
It has been so crucial for me in my teaching practice to use this app for music reading and editing. Arguably, it is easier for me now to just use my finger to flick the page turn than trying to turn paper sheet music in a binder. In iBooks, you can only turn the page horizontally. You can also arrange the pages of the music so you don't have to turn back (as you would in paper music) to go back for repeats, D.S al Coda, D.C. al Coda, etc. You just keep flicking forward through the pages, and can mark/highlight the changes in the music itself in the app.
This is not just a music-reading app. Within the app, there is a metronome app as well as a keyboard app to help you play through the notes of a song if you are away from an actual piano/keyboard.
Years ago, as an itinerant teacher, I would have to carry around binders and heavy books (like a middle-schooler with their backpack full of oversized textbooks and binders). Then, before tablet devices came to be, it was attempting to read music from a laptop and using the arrow keys to flip pages and standing a laptop on a piano or music stand. Not exactly the most elegant solution!
Now, it's just grab the iPad and go! I can store all of the necessary music for students on my iPad, and be able to make audition cuts by the end of a lesson to be able to send to a client a customized, professionally-marked/clean copy of their audition cut without having to use staples, plastic sheets, Sharpies, scissors, Scotch tape or any other number of things that one accompanist or another has a problem with using at auditions!
When I was in school or studying with voice teachers/coaches in NYC, they would either just tell me and point out what/where they thought an audition cut should be, and it would be my responsibility to go make copies and prepare the music for an audition. I like to have my students be able to leave a coaching not having to question how to mark the cut or wonder if they have prepared their music correctly for an accompanist at an audition.
While researching for this blogpost, I learned something new! For those readers that may not have an iPad, there is an iPhone app called forScore mini! It's great to have your music in an app either for use in a rehearsal situation, in the wings to reference before stepping out on stage for a concert or to study in an easy, portable way on the subway or at Starbucks! One can plug in their earbuds into their iPad or iPhone and plunk out the notes for their song anywhere, anytime!
If anyone has any questions or comments about using the forScore app either iPad or iPhone versions, please post them below!
forScore (iPad app)
forScore mini (iPhone app)