smart quotes

• Jan 1, 2012 - 15:17

I am trying to find where I can change quotes and apostrophes to become “smart,” meaning that they are “curly” as opposed to straight. It just looks more professional with smart quotes, and I am trying to get this music published eventually.

If this is not possible, I'd like to request that it be added in the next version. When is the next version coming out?


See my reply to your other recent post for info on the next version, but I am not aware of any plans to include smart quotes. In general, word processing-like features seem to be pretty low on the priority list. And you can get matched quotes if you know how to enter those characters directly. I don't know their character codes offhand, but it also works to type the text into a word processor then copy and paste it into MuseScore. I just tried it and got matching quotes that way.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

"... I am not aware of any plans to include smart quotes. In general, word processing-like features seem to be pretty low on the priority list. I don't know their character codes offhand, but it also works to type the text into a word processor then copy and paste it into MuseScore."

Marc, if you were entering lyrics several hours per day in MuseScore as we do for the OpenScore Lieder Corpus... I think you would very soon be forced admit that this is a very awkward, discontinuous workflow. And an efficient workflow is what we need when trying to be productive with MuseScore.

We already use the F2 Special Characters > Common Symbols palette to enter diacritics into lyrics (accented characters, umlaut characters, c cedilla etc) - and that is exactly where the smart quotes should be available. As should the Elisions and Hyphens (currently well hidden in F2 > Musical Symbols > Lyrics).

[EDIT] ... I just noticed that your post was 8 years ago. But here we are in 2020, and it's still a requirement!

In reply to by DanielR

:-) and note I didn't say I wouldn't be in favor of seeing this improved; I was just pointing out the best workaround that existed 8 years ago. Now, there is a much better workaround, add the characters you want from Special Characters to your own custom palette. Even though these particular symbols aren't (yet) in "Common Symbols", they are in the Unicode section and can be added to your own palette from there. So it ends up being easier than having to constantly access Special Characters.

The OP is correct, curly quotes are needed for published scores.

I just ran into this too, and I don't see why MuseScore couldn't do this for us. Yes, we can enter the text in another app and copy and paste from that, but that doesn't help with scores where Lyrics are already entered. Entering directly under the notes is usually the most intuitive way to enter the text. Copy/Paste works well, but it adds a layer of abstraction and to my mind is more work than it should be just to get correct quotes. Trying to change individual characters in already-entered text is a real pain, because of the way copy/paste is handled for Lyrics input, you have to copy the new character from somewhere (another app is the fastest), paste it into MuseScore, then reselect the text you just pasted into and delete the old character, which doesn't always work because selecting the text sometimes selects the element and not the text within it. If you select the straight quote character you want to replace within the text and try to paste over it with the curly quote character you've placed on the clipboard, that doesn't work; MuseScore keeps both characters side by side so you have to fiddle around with it. It's very sub-optimal.

I enter a lot of figured bass in MuseScore, which works beautifully entering things like 6\ and 4+ or the letter h to get special characters in the figures, and I'm left wondering why quotes in text elements couldn't work in a similar way. Meaning, we enter straight quotes and MuseScore changes them to curly quotes after we leave the element. That's also how word processors do it. Turn it on or off as a preference. Seems reasonable to me.

They exist as distinct characters but you will have to look for them in whatever keyboard layout and font you are using. I am currently using a custom keyboard layout that I created a long time ago and i can't tell you where they are on your system.

Attachment Size
CurlyQuotes.mscz 12.61 KB

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

The following instructions state how we have been asked to enter punctuation in text for the OpenScore Lieder Corpus:

Punctuation marks for lyrics in MuseScore.png

But I don't understand how this is supposed to work if using the F2 Special Characters palette. On the F2 Special Characters palette:
- Common Symbols is where these punctuation marks need to be for ease of use when entering lyrics, but I don't see them there; they should be on the same "page" as accented characters, characters with umlauts etc.
- Musical Symbols isn't the intuitive place to find these punctuation marks, nor do I find them in the Lyrics sub-section with Elisions and Hyphens (or in any other sub-section)
- Unicode Symbols is a reasonable place to find the punctuation marks, but so many of the Unicode characters just show up as a framed question mark - shouldn't they display correctly by default?
- Unicode Symbols > Supplemental Punctuation is 75%-80% unreadable (framed question marks)

About 15 years ago I dropped using Alt + 0nnn codes to enter "special characters", and now I seem to be back in the same old torture chamber.

What am I missing here? Should I make this an S5 Suggestion on the Issue Tracker?

I just did a bit of experimenting. You can create a title with just the quotes (using Alt keys, Unicode or copied from elsewhere). You can then [Ctrl][Shift] drag this to a custom pallet. Next time you need curly quotes you can drag them from the pallet to Title box then insert your title between the quotes. It works for lyrics too (create the lyric, place in pallet, etc.) Load this pallet to try it.

Attachment Size
Text_Quotes.mpal 990 bytes

In reply to by David Bolton

Thanks for sharing this.

I'm sure it must work for normal files created in MuseScore, though I haven't tried that yet.

In case this feedback might be useful — the plugin does strange things with lyrics in imported .ove files. Most of the quote symbols don't get replaced, and random words in the lyrics get repositioned, up 3 ticks in the Y direction.

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