The Composing Continuum

Opusmodus is a comprehensive computer-aided environment for the whole work of music composition
a virtual space where a composer can develop ideas and experiments for projects large and small.

The images above display each of the many panels that make up this unique music composition software. Together the panels make up a most exciting and flexible workspace for musical creativity. How the composer will use the Opusmodus interface with its many features and possibilities will always be a matter of experiment and personal choice.

One of the objectives around the design of Opusmodus is to respond to the many and various approaches composers have to make in particular projects and circumstances. Opusmodus interface is multi-faceted and has already proved it can deal with very exacting musical situations from the highly conceptual and experimental to the pragmatic needs of a commissioned work.

OMN The Language

OMN The Launguge

OMN is designed as a scripting language for musical events. It’s not about sounds themselves, it is about their control and organisation in a musical composition. As a linear script rather than a graphic stave, musical events can be transformed, extended, reorganised by powerful computer algorithms. The truly original aspect of OMN is that it has been designed to speak directly to traditional musical notation. Everything written in OMN script can be rendered instantly to notation and to a performance simulation.

As the OMN language is laid out and explored we’ll see just how fully the language of music staff notation is mirrored. This is not just in the standard elements of rhythms, pitch and dynamics but in the vast library of musical attributes that cover the way pitches and rhythms are performed by different instruments and voices. So musical notation is always there. Whatever you write an instant ’snippet’ can be rendered to view alongside your script.


OMN Snippet
((s a4 d5 fs4 d5 g4 d5) 
 (s a4 d5 fs4 d5 g4 d5) 
 (s a4 d5 cs5 b4 a4 g4) 
 (s fs4 d4 e4 c4 e d4))
OMN Snippet
((e e5 3e g5 bb4 g4 e a4)
 (3e a5 c4 a4 e bb4 3e g5 bb4 g4) 
 (s a4 c6 c6 a5 a5 f5)
 (s f5 d5 d5 c5 d5 bb5))
OMN Snippet
((s d5f5b5 f e5g5c6 e f5a5d6 s g5b5e6 f5a5d6 e5g5c6 d5f5b5) 
 (e c5e5a5 c5e5a5 q d5f5b5 marc) 
 (s d5f5b5 e5g5c6 f5a5d6 g5b5e6 e f5a5d6 s e5g5c6 d5f5b5) 
 (e c5e5a5 c5e5a5 q d5f5b5 marc))
OMN Snippet
((t cs5 pp< bs4 < cs5 < dn5 mp> cs5 > bn4 > gs4 > es4 pp -s fermata)
 (t gs4 fss4 gs4 an4 gs4 fss4 en4 cs4 -s fermata))
OMN Snippet
((q d4f4bb4d5 f< leg c4eb4a4c5 < leg bb3d4g4bb4 < leg e c4eb4a4c5 < leg d4f4ab4d5 ff> leg) 
 (q f4ab4d5f5 > leg e4g4bb4e5 > leg h fs4a4d5 mf) 
 (q c4ds4a4 p< leg bb3e4g4 < leg b3d4fs4 f leg e3g3cs4 > leg) 
 (h d3fs3d4 pp))
OMN Snippet
(-t. x d6 pp> stacc+arco 3s f4 > leg e5 > leg fs6 ppp -t. x cs4 p t. eb5 > leg x e4 ppp)
OMN Snippet
((e bb4 p> leg s fs5 stacc fs5 stacc+pizz - b3 acc+arco+harm c4 pp c4 stacc+pizz - a5 p> arco+leg d6 stacc cs5 acc+leg gs4 stacc -)
 (s cs5 pp stacc+pizz a5 acc+leg+arco gs4 stacc -e -s gs4 p> stacc+ten a5 acc d6 stacc eb4 pp ten+pizz))
OMN Snippet
(q c4 kgliss b5 kgliss c4 kgliss q c5 kgliss q cs4 kgliss b5 kgliss c4 kgliss cs5)


Making 2-D visualisations of musical parameters offer a new way of conceptualisation. Opusmodus graphical tools can plot pitch, rhythms, duration, dynamics and orchestration and there's a host of different display paradigms available.

The composer can now view the interaction of multiple streams of parametric data, a perfect way to take in complex algorithmically-generated material. Composers often use such visualisations in the early stages of a project before precise pitches or rhythms are decided upon.

Made in Opusmodus

Users Examples

Opusmodus Quick Start


Download Opusmodus and use it for free 30 days

By default, a Mac will block the installation of apps that are not from the Mac App Store or created by identified developers. If you are unable to install Opusmodus on your Mac please follow the three steps below or go to Macworld.com for help.

1. In Finder, Control-click or right click the icon of the Opusmodus app.
2. Select Open from the top of contextual menu that appears.
3. Click Open in the dialog box. If prompted, enter an administrator name and password.

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Opusmodus Lessons

Learn by Composing

with Stephane Boussuge

Opusmodus offers lessons to students and professionals interested in composing music with Opusmodus. We provide lessons for beginners and advanced users with or without programming knowledge, online (Skype) or on site. The lessons are created to give you a greater understanding of the Opusmodus design and introduce you to the main features focusing on different composing approaches.

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“Opusmodus is currently the most advanced software for computer-assisted composition available. It comes with the highest development potential to fulfil the aesthetical and technical requirements for contemporary composers. At the University Mozarteum, Salzburg Opusmodus is already part of the compositional education and will be the preferred production environment in the future."

Univ. Prof. Achim Bornhoeft
Head of Studio for Electronic Music, Head of Institute for New Music

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