Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between the ORCHPLAY PRO and ORCHPLAY PRO FOR STUDENT versions?

The ORCHPLAY PRO and ORCHPLAY PRO FOR STUDENT versions are identical but students are offered a special discount price.

What is the difference between the ORCHPLAY PRO (STUDENT) and ORCHPLAY PRO TEACHER versions?

The ORCHPLAY PRO TEACHER version gives you more options than the ORCHPLAY PRO and the ORCHPLAY PRO STUDENT versions. The idea is to provide specific material the teacher can use for classwork, assignments or exams.
Here is a little scheme that will provide some clarification:

One year subscription to the OrchPlay Music Library
Plays OrchPlay multichannel files
Controls all instruments of the orchestra
Study scores print-ready in pdf
Orchestra Window; Mixer/Stage
Measure Locator and advanced Bookmarks functions


+PLAYS ADDED AUDIO REDUCTIONS for piano and piano versions in several pieces.
In the MIXER VIEW, the REDUCTIONS channels at the bottom right are ACTIVATED.

+ADDED PDF REDUCTIONS for piano and piano versions + empty scores in several pieces. They are great for assignments or classwork:
Students can be asked to reconstruct an orchestration from a reduction listening to the orchestra (parts, sections or families) or to provide their own. The teacher provides the print-ready template.

+ADDED PIECES reserved for teachers that can be given as assignments.
Those are orchestrations of a specific piano piece for which the original composer has not written one or when no published one exists.
We have provided professional orchestral versions that can serve as examples for the students to be discussed in class.
Typically, the teacher would distribute the empty orchestral score with only the piano part to the students and ask for an orchestration, or could also do the reverse and ask for a full reduction or piano version from the full score.

If you go on the website under "OrchPlay Music Library", you will see that some pieces are marked "reserved for teachers" when you click on them. The ORCHPLAY PRO TEACHER license allows you to download them.
This is the case for the moment for the following pieces:
Chopin_PrelOp28_4(25 mes)
Chopin_PrelOp28_20(13 mes)
Chopin_PrelOp28_22(41 mes)
Chopin_PrelOp28_9(12 mes)
Chopin_PrelOp28_9(12 mes)
Schumann_AlbumJung_1(20 mesx4)
Debussy_SuiteBergam_i-Prelude(89 mes)
Joplin_EliteSync_Part-I(148 mes)_6Perc(1-84)+piano(148 mes)

Could you explain the different pdf formats for the scores and which musical excerpts are available in each format?

PRELIMINARY NOTE: The pdf SCORES featuring the available reductions and piano versions as well as the corresponding audio channels (in OrchPlay's Stage View) will be found in the TEACHER version only. But this FAQ also provides general info on all orchestral scores provided by OrchPlay.

I) OrchPlayMusic (OPM) pdf scores are designed as "STUDY SCORES". What we mean by that is that the format and layout of those scores is such that the teacher can print them and use them in the classroom or for assignments.
I.1 The actual size and spacing of the staves makes it possible to directly write into the printed scores with a pencil or pen.
I.2 Depending on the size of the orchestra, the format can be: Letter (8.5x11 in), Legal (8.5x14 in), Tabloid (11x17 in) or Double Tabloid (two 11x17 sheets on top of each other totalling 11x34 in).
NOTE: Published orchestral scores are more compact, in order to minimize page turns and provide a better overall view for the conductor. OrchPlayMusic scores are meant to be used for orchestration work and provide space to try out many different orchestration possibilities.

II) OPM scores are always organized in the following fashion and PROVIDE:
II.1 (from the top of the page): All staves for the instruments involved in a particular piece in the classical family ordering. No staff is left out when an instrument is not playing.
II.2 (bottom of the page) A series of Grand Staves to be used for

  • FULL REDUCTIONs: All notes actually played by the orchestra; an "unplayable analytical score" from a pianistic point of view.
  • SELECTIVE REDUCTIONs: Per family, for ex.: WWinds, Brasses, Strings; all notes played by a specific instrumental family.
  • PIANO VERSIONs: Playable versions by a pianist, involving a selective approach and idiomatic adaption.

II.3 The REDUCTION staves names always include in parentheses the audio channel they are recorded on in the OrchPlay Player's Stage View when available.
NOTE-1: Not all scores feature reductions and piano versions, and some of them for certain sections only (see point IV).
NOTE-2: Even if reductions or piano versions are not available, the empty staves are provided for classwork or assignments.
NOTE-3: The pdf SCORES featuring the available reductions and piano versions as well as the corresponding audio channels (in OrchPlay's Stage View) will be found in the TEACHER version only.

III) SCORES in C: OPM provides all scores in C ("sounding"). While working with transposed scores is integral part of the orchestrator's "métier", experience in the classroom has demonstrated that students come up with more sensible results (and faster) when they work "in C". OPM will be pleased to also provide transposed scores in the future if there is a need.

IV) DIFFERENT VERSIONS of the score (TEACHER version):
IV.3- ORCH+piano
IV.4- ORCH+REDUC+piano
IV.5- other instrumental formations (such as BRASS_REDUC, STR+REDUC, etc.)

The "OrchPlay Music Library" MENU on the website lists very precisely what is available for each piece. Columns "PIECE" and SCORE INFO" provide the exact details:

For ex.:

Mozart Symph35K385 iii(1-8) ORCH+REDUC+piano
(1-8= mes. excerpt) (full orchestra+reduction+piano version for the whole excerpt)

The TEACHER will find the following scores in the "Embedded Documents" middle section of the Drawer:
1- Mozart_Symph35K385_iii(1-8)_ORCH.pdf
(Orchestral score with empty staves for reduction and piano version)
2- Mozart_Symph35K385_iii(1-8)_ORCH+REDUC+piano.pdf
(Orchestral score with reduction and piano version)
3- Mozart_Symph35K385_iii(1-8)_piano.pdf
(piano version with empty staves for the rest)
4- Mozart_Symph35K385_iii(1-8)_REDUC+piano.pdf
(reduction + piano version with empty staves for the orchestra)

Debussy La Mer i(141 mes) ORCH+REDUC(122-141)
("mes"= whole movement) (full orchestra+reduction provided for mes. 122-141 only)

The TEACHER will find the following scores in the "Embedded Documents" middle section of the Drawer:
1- Debussy_La Mer_i(141 mes)_ORCH.pdf
(Orchestral score with empty staves for reduction and piano version)
2- Debussy_La Mer_i(141 mes)_ORCH+REDUC(122-141).pdf
(Orchestral score with reduction for mes. 122-141)
3- Debussy_La Mer_i(141 mes)_REDUC(122-141).pdf
(reduction for mes. 122-141 with complete empty orchestral score)

Can OrchPlay read stereo audio files?

a) Yes, absolutely. You can LINK a stereo audio file (or any other document) to an OrchPlay (.opl) file by drag-and-dropping it to the centre lower column of the INFORMATION DRAWER. A simple double-click will then open those documents with their associated software.
b) You can also IMPORT a stereo audio file into an .opl file with the function "Import Stereo Audio File" at the top of the SELECTION menu on the upper left of the OrchPlay player. A selection window will open and ask to select the specific file and then sort it in either a new or existing folder. Those new .opl files can then be navigated with the OrchPlay transport mechanism and be assigned bookmarks.

Can I add measure numbers to imported stereo audio files?

This function will be part of a coming update. The user will be able to write-in the measure numbers. For the moment you can use the information on the position head in time units (00m 00s 00ms) and store them in bookmarks.

Is it possible to listen to multichannel audio .opl files on the website?

Sadly, no. This possibility is reserved to OrchPlay Music Library subscribers who download the multichannel audio .opl files. On the other hand, all stereo versions can be listened to from the website and downloaded at will in .mp3 format.

What will be the rate of production of new pieces for the coming months/years?

The OrchPlay Music Library currently offers a selection of 100 musical pieces (from short excerpts to full movements) from the symphonic repertoire from late 18th Century to Contemporary. The selection is planned to feature a growing number of complete movement and expand to ca 400 significant orchestral masterworks within a few years. The goal is to provide an international reference database of multichannel orchestral recordings accessible to the widest public possible at a modest cost. Subscribers can count on several additions every month.

May I suggest new pieces to be included in the repertoire of the OrchPlay Music Library?

Certainly. We have already made a selection of 400 representative works but we will be very happy to hear about your suggestions. In a year or two, OrchPlayMusic will be considering the production of commissioned pieces at special conditions.

Can I include "alias-links" in the INFORMATION DRAWER?

Certainly! Drag-and-dropping a document to the middle column of the INFORMATION DRAWER actually creates a copy of that document in the central OrchPlay database on your hard drive; it becomes independent from the original. Drag-and-dropping an "alias" will link the original document itself.

Is there a way to modify an orchestration?

To a certain extent, yes. You can select any instrument or any instrumental combinations and modify their balance. One cannot speak of a "new orchestration", but those processes nevertheless have a large influence on the final audio mix.

Is it possible to "tune" the orchestra for a specific piece (hertz or cents)?

This function is planned for a coming OrchPlay update. The user will be able to modify the global tuning of a multichannel .opl file by + - a semitone without altering speed. This should provide great flexibility for musicians interested in performing their orchestral part with the OrchSim orchestra.

Is it possible to have the score be in sync with the audio file (score follower)?

Not yet but this is a priority in the development of the OrchPlay Music Library. Not only are we planning to sync the score with the audio file but we will allow the user to select instruments directly in the score within a year. Those new developments will go hand in hand with the porting of OrchPlay to electronic tablets.

What is the most challenging piece you are planning to produce?

Quite an interesting question! The difficulties are dependent on the number of individual instrumental parts but also on the complexity of each individual part (multiple variations in articulation, phrasing, dynamic, timbre, etc.). We have already produced piece excerpts that feature more than 40 instrumental parts like Vaughan Williams' London Symphony, Richard Strauss' Tod und Verklärung or Debussy's La Mer. Mahler large symphonies (for ex. Nr.6) or Stravinsky's Le Sacre du Printemps can feature up to 60 independent parts! We are very much looking forward to pick up the challenge!

Contact Support