Formatting text

    Overview—levels of formatting

    There are three levels of text formatting in MuseScore:

    1. Text style
    2. Text object
    3. Character

    Text style

    When you create a text object in the score it automatically assumes a style appropriate to its class. For example, a tempo mark will have the “Tempo” style; a fingering number, the "Fingering" style and so on.

    A style consists of a group of text properties (font-size, align, offset etc.) with specific values. You can view the full range of text styles in FormatStyleText Styles.

    To check the style of a selected text object, click the More button in the Text section of the Properties panel. The style name will be visible under "Text style".

    Text style is the top level of formatting.

    Text object properties

    The text properties of a particular, selected text object can be viewed and edited in the Text section of the Properties panel.

    This is the second-level of formatting—the text object level.

    Character formatting

    Individual characters within a text object may themselves be formatted independently.

    This is the third level of formatting—the character level.

    Formatting hierarchy

    Character formatting overrides Text object formatting, which, in turn, overrides Style.

    Applying text properties

    Apply to a text object

    After clicking on a text object you can edit its text properties in the Text section of the Properties panel.

    Text properties

    Click More to see:

    More text properties

    Apply to characters

    In order to edit the characters within a text object you need to enter text edit mode using one of the following methods:

    • Double-click on the text object.
    • Select the object and press F2 or Alt+Shift+E
    • Right-click on the element and select Edit element

    Then you can apply formatting to highlighted characters using the Text section of the Properties panel, and/or keyboard shortcuts (see Editing text).

    Note that certain properties in the Properties panel are not applicable to characters—such as "Alignment", "Frame", "Text style" and so on. If you attempt to apply them, they are added to the text object instead.

    Setting style defaults

    If you want to change the default style properties of a particular class of objects, you can do so in the Style menu: From the menu bar, select FormatStyleText Styles.

    However, it is often better to do this from the Properties panel itself:

    1. Select a score object of the style in question;
    2. Edit a property;
    3. Click on the ellipsis (…) above the property and select "Save as default style for this score".
    4. Repeat for other properties as required.

    Selecting different text styles

    If you wish to change the text style associated with a text object:

    1. Click on the text object.
    2. Click the More in the Text section of the Properties panel.
    3. Select a new style from the dropdown list under "Text style".


    For text objects applied to the staff, the default position may be above or below the staff. This may be changed at the style or text object level with the Position property (Above/Below).