LilyPond for Orthodox Dummies: Setting Hymns to Music

Using the free program LilyPond, anyone can set Orthodox liturgical hymns to music. With the instructions and templates on this page, you'll be arranging your own music by the day's end.

To start, download and install LilyPond.

Next, download and save it on your Desktop.

Finally, download, save it on your Desktop, and open it in Notepad. (While you can use any text editor, we'll use the term 'Notepad' for convenience.) To do this, right-click on the file, select "Open with", and and click "Notepad".

Now go through the following tutorial. There are five lessons. At each lesson, practice changing the notes in the sample ".ly" files. Then save your changes, and double-click on the file. A PDF file containing your music will appear, entitled "sample1.pdf". Open it to see the notes you've written.

Note: The next time you make changes, be SURE to close the PDF file before double-clicking the sample ".ly" files. Otherwise your changes won't show up.

Next Lesson