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Virtual Singer
General points
Quick creation
Shaped notes
Jazz Scat
Midi & ABC
Rules for writing
Technical  background
SAMPA notation
Summary of commands
Real Singer
Myriad HQ
Software license
Technical support
Printable manual

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Virtual Singer

Rules for writing sung staves

Lyrics can be entered directly within the software. To do this, please refer to the chapters dealing with Karaoke.  Please bear in mind that problems can occur if the link between musical phrases and lyrics is not made properly.

Several sung staves can be included within a single document, each staff sung by a selected performer. Thus, if you write a piece for bass, tenor and soprano, you will have to write three different staves. Virtual Singer allows you to define the voice of each performer with considerable precision.

If a staff includes several notes in a chord, several performers with the same voice will sing the different notes at the same time. This feature can be used for producing the effect of a choir.

To enter lyrics in Japanese, use the Romanji transcription.

Sung Staves

A sung staff is characterized by its melody. Each syllable is linked to one or more notes. Some parameters of the note are used to change the way the syllable is sung.

Note: Virtual Singer can also sing even when no lyrics are written under a staff: for instance in a Gospel staff (FaSoLa), a Gregorian Staff, or when the lyrics under a staff are left empty. These modes allow you to have a sung staff without having to enter any lyrics.
  • Note pitch gives the frequency of the syllable.
  • Note duration gives the syllable duration.
  • To extend a syllable, rules of singing technique are applied in order to extend the most stretchable phoneme of the syllable. When splitting the words, do not forget that a syllable is stretchable if it contains at least one vowel.
  • Note velocity has an effect on the power of the sung syllable.
  • Effects are interpreted too, especially bend effects. They will change the syllable frequency while it is sung. 
  • When a syllable is extended over several notes with different pitches, the frequency of the sung syllable will move in order to follow this melody.
  • Volume effects are also interpreted. They allow you to obtain a smooth beginning or ending on a note.
Keep in mind that the best results are obtained when the lyrics follow these guidelines:
  • words are separated from each other with spaces
  • syllables are separated with hyphens
  • punctuation (, ; .: ? !) is entered properly
  • capitals are used at the beginning of each verse and accented characters (especially in French) are included where needed. Correct spelling is important to give the correct pronunciation.
When Virtual Singer loads a MIDI or ABC  Karaoke file, it analyzes the lyrics to find the most probable language.
Note: You can have several languages within a single document (for example, a woman singing in English and a man in French). Depending on the language, Virtual Singer analyzes the lyrics and determines the phonemes to be sung.

In the special case of French, liaisons are computed (vocalization of the final consonant before an initial vowel sound). For example, "les oiseaux" will generate "l ey Z w ah z ow" (the birds).

Virtual Singer can make mistakes when converting written text to phonetic sounds. You can correct its pronunciation by following the wrong syllable with text written between square brackets which "sounds out" the right pronunciation. This text is only shown during the editing process and does not appear on screen. Mistakes most often occur on foreign words, or on words which have several pronunciations for the same spelling (live, read, ...).

For example, if the word "D'Ar-ta-gnan" is pronounced "Dar-tay-gnan", the following change can be made: "D'Ar-ta[tah]-gnan[nyan]".

This method for amending the resulting phonetics is generally sufficient.

However, it is possible to define the pronunciation of a given syllable even more precisely, by typing the SAMPA notation between brackets in the form [#xxxx].  (Do not forget the # character after the opening bracket.)

For more information about the SAMPA notation, please consult the relevant chapter.

In addition, some lyrics mix several languages. To change languages within a single staff, a set of specific commands is available:


[!frnord] to switch in North French
[!frsud] to switch in South French
[!gb] to switch in U.K. English
[!us] to switch is U.S. English
[!latin] to switch in Latin
[!espa] to switch in Spanish
[!ita] to switch in Italian
[!fin] to switch in Finnish
[!jap] to switch in Japanese
[!de] to switch in German
[!oc] to switch in Occitan

in your lyrics to change language.

For example, if you write:
"D'Ar-ta-gnan on his horse."

Virtual Singer will pronounce something like "D ar / t ay / g n a n / o n  / h ee z / h o r s".

You can improve it by writing:

"[!frnord]D'Ar-ta-gnan [!gb]on his horse."

Spoken staves

A spoken staff is a staff of the "Text" type. It includes "Lyrics" but no musical symbols. In this case, the text will be spoken, not sung.

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