Signing off

by Daniel Spreadbury on October 31, 2012 · 61 comments

in Meta

The Sibelius Software team, receiving the Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2005. (Click for a larger version.)

Today is my last day of employment at Avid, and this will be my final post here on the Sibelius blog.

My first day of employment with Sibelius Software was Tuesday 4 May 1999, when I was an Oxford music graduate of just 22 years of age, and I was splitting my time between singing as a lay clerk at Ely Cathedral by evening and answering technical support emails, letters (yes, real actual letters! Imagine that) and phone calls by day. And, of course, answering questions on the Sibelius chat page (as it was known then) at all hours of the day and night.

Some things haven’t changed in the intervening 13 years — until today, I’ve maintained my habit of answering questions on the forum at all hours of the day and night — but many other things have. I’ve been witness to Sibelius Software growing, moving to larger premises twice within two years, opening offices in Australia and Japan, being showered with awards, being acquired by Avid, surviving the trials and tribulations of the fortunes of its parent company, and now going through certainly the largest changes in its history.

I started the Sibelius blog just over four years ago, in October 2008. The Sibelius Software of old was rapidly being absorbed into Avid, and staff were laid off as the company struggled to streamline its operations. With fewer people dedicated to Sibelius inside Avid, I decided to set up the blog and run it in my spare time, with the aim that the stories about the amazing things that Sibelius users were doing with the software could continue to be shared with the world, and to provide tips and tutorials for using the program. Over the intervening four years, I’ve written nearly 450 posts on a wide variety of topics. I’ve heard and shared some wonderful stories, and regular readers have hopefully learned something along the way.

Now that I am leaving Avid, I am handing the reins for the Sibelius blog over to Philip Rothman. Philip is an expert Sibelius user based in New York City, and in addition to being a professional composer, orchestrator and copyist, which you can learn about through his business web site, he has also run a number of acclaimed training sessions on Sibelius.

Philip has committed to me that he will continue to run the blog in the same spirit in which I first began it, and I am very grateful to him. I hope you will stick around and enjoy the great stories and tutorials I know he will share here in the weeks and months to come.

Of course, there is also a new official Sibelius blog on the Avid web site, which will feature guest posts from other prominent Sibelius bloggers as well as posts direct from the mothership, so you can check that out, too.

Thirteen and a half years after I started at Sibelius Software, I am a few days from my 36th birthday, and it’s finally time to say goodbye.

Me and my bride, walking by the Tiber in Rome on our honeymoon, four years ago.

Although I am sad to be leaving this part of my life behind, I will be carrying so much of it forwards with me. I met my beautiful wife Sarah through Sibelius, and together we now have two amazing children, Amelia and Ayrton. I have made many great friends, and there is a strong bond between the people who were a part of Sibelius Software that abides even now. I have travelled to a number of countries and met countless talented and interesting people, including several of my musical heroes. It has been quite a ride — filled with ups and downs, of course — and there are few things I would change.

It has been my privilege to be the steward of the software born more than 25 years ago of Ben and Jonathan Finn’s unique genius, and I have always tried to embody the spirit of their creation in each feature and version I have designed, in collaboration with the most remarkably talented team of programmers and testers you could ever hope to find. Now it’s the turn of a new team within Avid to take Sibelius forwards, and to do their best to serve the needs of musicians all over the world as I and my colleagues have done for all these years. I wish them luck.

To everybody who has expressed support and concern for me and for my colleagues over the past few months, thank you. It really has meant a lot to us.

If you would like to stay in touch with me, I’m easily found on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Until we meet again, so long.

The Finsbury Park office, Sibelius’s home for 10 years, now stands empty. (Click for a larger version.)

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{ 61 comments… read them below or add one }

Robert Van Horne November 1, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Best wishes to you, Daniel. You know how to make Sibelius a part of a musicians world. You will be missed!

Paul Hunter November 1, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Wishing you all the best for the future!

Scott Yoho November 1, 2012 at 5:30 PM

Hi Daniel,

That was a classy goodbye – nicely done. Best wishes to you. -Scott

H-C November 1, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Thanks, Daniel, for everything. There you go and I’m wondering what challenges you will master next. And we, left behind, still don’t know whether in fact there were two or three of you …

Mike Hughes-Chamberlain November 1, 2012 at 7:20 PM

All the best, Daniel, and thanks for all your help over the past years. This is a very sad day for all Sibelius users.

Mimi Mansky November 1, 2012 at 8:53 PM


Wishing you the best of luck in your future endeavors.


Ron Bird November 2, 2012 at 10:58 AM

Sad days, Daniel. Thank you for all your efforts – your replies to my not infrequent silly questions were always treated well. I trust Sibelius will not die a death, as has been conjectured in the UK media.

David Sanderson November 2, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Many thanks for all your help over the years. Good luck and best wishes.

Madelon Michel November 3, 2012 at 4:31 PM

Goodbye Daniel, I’ll miss your posts. I have always been an ‘avid’ reader when I found the Sibelius blog in my postbox; there was always something interesting to read. So sorry you are stopping. I hope your successor will do as well. All the best for the future, for you and your family!
Madelon Michel

Arthur Schroeck November 5, 2012 at 1:14 AM

What a crime this is. I will miss you.

Andrew Norris November 7, 2012 at 11:57 AM

What a pity. I only just ‘met’ you and now you are going. Thanks for the invaluable help you gave me when I first started with Sib 7, I have not forgotten your kindness.
All the best with your future ventures.

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