Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius
The rehearsal tracks for the Dream of Gerontius have been put together in three different forms.
The simplest to use are “MP3” files, being just like any other music track that you listen to on the internet. They can be played directly via a browser or downloaded so that, for example, they can be played on a car stereo. Click here for instructions on how to use the MP3 files.
The second option is to use MuseScore files. These files contain the complete score of a piece of music. They contain the notes played by the individual voices, dynamics, speeds, loudness – everything needed to create the score, and in addition, contain instructions for playback with (depending on the computer) reasonably authentic instrument and voice sounds (but not the words – that is much more expensive!). The tracks can be played on line through your browser. Click here for instructions on how to use MuseScore on line
The MP3 files can be found by using this link:
Once you are in the master folder for the piece, click on the lower-level folders to find the particular item. For example in the Kyrie-> MP3 Files folder, you will find five files, one with a “Full” suffix to hear all voices for the track, and the remainder have emphasised voice parts – the other parts are still there, but at reduced volume.
When you navigate to a particular MP3 file, you should see something this:
The play controls are at the bottom left of the screen, and the volume control is to the right. If you would like to download a copy of the MP3 file, click on the “Download” button to the right of the “Sign In” button, and select the “Direct Download” option. What happens next depends on the variety of browser you are using, but you should be given options either to play the track using something like Windows Media Player, or to save the file locally in a directory of your choice.
If you are working on a tablet (this is the experience on an Apple tablet anyway), if you have a DropBox app installed on your tablet, the MP3 files will appear there rather than in your browser. The files will play from the DropBox app. Select “Make Available Offline” or “Save to My DropBox” (depending on the version) so that the files are stored locally and accessible when you are not connected to the Internet.
MuseScore On Line
To find the Dream of Gerontius files, click on this link :
The play controls are at the top left, just under the MuseScore logo. The score will scroll in step with the bar being played. Probably it will be easier to use if the “Full Screen” button is pressed – the square character to the right of the play controls.
To modify the playback, for example to emphasise a particular voice part, click on the button next to the “Full Screen” button (looks like a small gear wheel). You will be taken to the following sub-menu:
Click on “Playback Speed” to alter the overall speed of the piece.
Click on “Loop” to restrict the score to a given set of bars, and for the playback to keep repeating that section. Bar numbers can be found on the score at the beginning of each new line. Bar 1 is not numbered….
Click on “Font resize” to make the score bigger or smaller. Now, the really interesting part is when you click on “Mixer”.
In the sub-menu that appears, first click on “Enable Synth” – this just alters the synthesizer being used for playback to one that allows a bit more flexibility. Once this has been done, a list of the various voices in the music will appear.
Click on “Solo” to hear that voice only.
Click on the gearwheel to go to a screen where you can alter the volume of that voice, and, should you wish to do so, to alter the instrument that plays that voice. Click on “Back to mixer” to go back to choose another voice to modify.
Then go back to the score to hear the result of what you have done. DON’T WORRY, you can’t damage anything. If, like me, from time to time you make a complete mess of the adjustments you have tried, just go back to the original screen (the URL link above) and start again.
Playing MuseScore Tracks Locally
To find the files to download, using the browser on your phone or tablet, go to:
HOWEVER (at 20/9/2018), MuseScore on the Apple tablets has been updated and the useful part of being able to adjust the volume of each of the voice parts independently is a (very expensive) pay for option. Consequently it is recommended that the on line version above is used for the time being anyway. In the absence of a reliable internet connection, download the MP3 files as a last resort. If this limitation changes in the future, a message to that effect will be put out (probably via FaceBook).