Creating cross-staff beams

Cross-staff beams work in a similar way to normal beams, but allow a phrase that covers a wide pitch range to be shown on two staves. You can create cross-staff beams by inputting all notes in the phrase on one staff and crossing some notes to appear on another staff.


  • You have input a phrase on one staff.

  • If you are in Engrave mode, Graphic Editing is selected in the Engrave toolbox.


  1. Select the notes you want to cross to another staff. You can do this in Write mode and Engrave mode.

    You can only cross notes to other staves in multi-staff instruments.

  2. Cross the notes to other staves in any of the following ways:
    • To cross notes to the staff above, press N.

    • To cross notes to the staff below, press M.


The selected notes are shown on a different staff, with a cross-staff beam shown if the notes are part of a beam group. This does not change the staff to which the notes belong.

  • When crossing notes to a staff that already contains notes, the stem direction of the existing notes on the staff can change. This is due to how multiple voices at the same rhythmic position are handled. Therefore, you may have to change the stem direction of notes manually.

  • You can reset notes to appear on their default staff by selecting them and choosing Edit > Cross Staff > Reset to Original Staff.

  • If you want notes to belong to a different staff, you can move them to another staff.


Figure 1. Notes shown on their original staves
Figure 2. Cross-staff beams created by crossing some notes to the other staff