Finale: Tempo Rubato HOW TO

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Tempo Rubato is from italian language, and it means basically Stolen Time. Tempo Rubato is typically written suspending the normal time in the score, writing just notes to give the basic pitch, and leaving the time interpretation to the musician. It is very similar to Cadenza ( that means: Cadence ) but: while in Cadenza you have the duration of each note declared, and the musician is free just to accelerate or slow down the execution, with Rubato there is more freedom. Both, of course, are in Solo execution. Well, now the question is: how to implement Tempo Rubato in Finale ? because this kind of tempo, is not clearly reported by any function in Finale itself. But there is a workaround to reach this goal.


Suppose that initial time division is 4/4, and that you have a measure in which you have to write "Rubato" on it. Suppose also that you have to write down 15 notes on that measure, and each note, to be clear at the musician, should be written in 1/4th each. In few words, and practically, you need 15/4th on that measure. Well at that point:

  1. Go in TIME SIGNATURE TOOL ( the icon with normally written 4/4 on it )
  2. Select the measure in which should be "Rubato"
  3. Right key of your mouse
  5. it will pop up the window of TIME SIGNATURE
  6. Click over the slide "Number of Beats" in a way to have 15/4, that's what you need
  7. In the box MEASURE REGION click on the first option above all ( MEASURE: THROUGH: )
  8. On the upper right side, click on OPTIONS <<
  9. The window will be extended in it's lower side and it will appear a box very similar to it's upper one
  10. Check the box "USE A DIFFERENT TIME SIGNATURE FOR DISPLAY", that in this case is 4/4
  11. Click on OK

From this moment on, in the measure highlighted you can write 15 notes of 1/4th each one, and time signature will be suspended. With EXPRESSION TOOL you will create the write "RUBATO", so that you can put it over the staff. Of course, when Finale will execute this measure, it will not perform Tempo Rubato. In order to achieve this goal, it is necessary to do some further action.

  1. Highlight the same measure
  2. Click on menu PLUG-INS
  3. Click on sub menu PLAYBACK
  4. Then go in APPLY HUMAN PLAYBACK...
  5. A window will be opened, and check "RUBATO" changing the percentage with the cursor
  6. Then click on SELECT...
  7. Change the MOOD cursor to the percentage the you would like
  8. Click on OK
  9. Click on APPLY
  10. Click on CLOSE

If the plug-in works fine, that measure will be reproduced with Tempo Rubato as should be.