Impose Sketch onto Template

Version 3.02
Added 17 Aug 2016 (last updated 30 Jan 2017)

For use with Sibelius 6, Sibelius 7.1, Sibelius 7.5, Sibelius 8.x, Sibelius 18.x, Sibelius 19.x, Sibelius 20.x and Sibelius 21.x

Impose Sketch onto Template

For use with Sibelius 6.x, 7.x and 8.x.

This plug-in will impose the structure of a piano vocal score, sketch score or any score that you need to extract the structure from, onto a template file, transferring time signatures, key signatures, tempo text (tempo, repeat, metronome mark, etc.), bar number changes, special barlines (double, repeat, dashed, final, etc.), system symbols, system lines (rit, 1st endings, etc.), and rehearsal marks.

The plug-in will not work on a file which starts with an irregular first bar. In this case, you will need to make the bar regular again by deleting its’ contents before running the plug-in. Once the information has been transferred to the template score, you can use the plug-in ‘Add pickup bar’ to add the irregular bar back to the template score, and then go back to the original file and reinstate the irregular bar and its’ contents by performing edit > undo.


1. Setting up the template file

The template file must:

  • have only one bar
  • have no key signature (open key)
  • have no time signature (set up as 4/4, then manually delete)
  • use a title wildcard (\$title) to transfer the sketch title
  • use a subtitle wildcard (\$subtitle) to transfer the sketch subtitle

Title, header, composer and any other system text that forms part of the template file should be attached to the first bar, as it would be usually.

Tip: If you are adding the contents of the sketch staves to the template file, setting ‘auto system breaks’ to every 4 or 8 bars (depending on the content density) gives better page distribution of material which can then be tweaked as necessary.

For ease of navigation to the template file, it seems to help if it is located in the same folder as the sketch file. This will shortcut the menus to the relevant folder when opening and saving the template. It can also help to set the default saving location to the folder that contains the sketch file and the template file. This path can be set by going to Sibelius > Preferences > Saving and Exporting > Saving Scores.

2. Running the plug-in

  1. Open the file you want to extract the bar structure from.
  2. Run the plug-in and follow the on-screen instructions.

The plug-in may be found (by default) in the following locations:

  • Sibelius 7.x, Sibelius 8.x: Home tab > Plug-ins
  • Sibelius 6.x: Plug-ins menu > Other

For a video showing how the plug-in works, click the link:

Thanks to Neil Sands for his support and advice on the creation of this plug-in.

Version history

Version 2.01 adds the option to include the sketch staves on the bottom of the template, and also the option to add their contents.

Version 3.01 adds the option to transfer the title and subtitle of the sketch score to the template file so long as those fields are utilised in 'score info’. This update also separates the metronome mark and metric modulation text styles from the standard tempo text so that they can be selected independently, and adds the option to select Timecode. Sketch score brackets, braces and barlines will now correctly transfer to the template file if the option to add the staves is enabled. This update also offers a filename for the ‘save’ dialog box, and users are able to specify a filename extension for the template file in order to distinguish it from its sketch counterpart.

Version 3.02 fixes a bug when using the plug-in with Sibelius 8.3 and higher, which would add a stray double bar between bar 1 and 2 if Key Signatures were selected to impose.

Plug-in written by Tom Curran.