Tonara, the interactive sheet music app, has announced a new score synchronization feature for its iPad app. One of Tonara’s biggest updates, score synchronization currently allows musicians to review their practice sessions and, in the future, will power stage management functions such as automatic lighting or supertitle changes at concert venues and opera houses.
Tonara’s technology combines audio signal analysis with proprietary algorithms to enable computers to understand notes in live or recorded music. This means that Tonara’s app can now follow any number of notes played simultaneously on any number of different instruments, track the user’s current position in the score even if he or she changes tempo or makes a mistake, and turn the page at the right moment. It can also match any note in a score with the corresponding note in a session recorded on the Tonara app, so musicians don’t have to rewind or fast-forward through audio playback in order to find passages they need to listen to or practice.
Tonara is currently positioning the score sychronization feature as a practice tool, but the Ramat Gan, Israel-based startup is also working on partnerships that will use its tech to power things like smart karaoke systems or stage management tools that will enable lights, projected images or subtitles to automatically change based on specific notes or passages in a score.
One of the finalists at 2011’s TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco, Tonara has raised a total of $4.75 million so far, including a $4 million Series A round announced in July 2012. Investors include Carmel Ventures, Index Ventures, Lool Ventures, Eilon Tirosh and Rami Lipman.
Tonara has built up its library of sheet music by partnering with major print music publishers like Hal Leonard, which manages about 200,000 publications and products including music from popular artists signed to Universal, Sony and EMI. The app serves as a “digital music binder” for musicians by letting them download free scores and purchase sheet music for songs from hit artists, or import scores from email, Web or cloud storage services such as Dropbox. In addition to its score-syncing and page-turning features, Tonara also helps musicians hone their skills with an annotation feature that lets them create layers of notes for different teachers or practice sessions.