How to use it

First Steps

After the installation, simply open Cantara with your start menu or the cantara command. You will then see the welcome assistent which helps you to go through the configuration of Cantara. The English Cantara Settings

Here you should choose a song repository directory where you all the song lyrics files are stored. If you have none yet, you can create an empty new folder and select it as your song repository. The assistent will suggest you to add “Amazing Grace” as an example song which you can use to understand how the program works.

After you have finished the welcome assistent, you should also adjust the font settings, the text color or the background color according to your wishes. You can do that in the Settings (Edit -> Settings). The option Spoiler next Slide will show the lyrics of the next song part in smaller font size under the current part.

Beside that, you can configure how the Meta Data of songs should be displayed. See more details in the section Meta Data.

The Song Selection Window

If the configuration has been done successfully, you will come to the song selection window where you can choose the songs which you would like to sing. The search field may help you to find the one you like. Simply double-click or press enter after the selection of the song in the left list, and the song will go to the right list where you can adjust the order or remove the selected songs.

After you are done, press the Presentation button to start the presentation. You can also press CTRL+P instead.

Cantara will automatically detect at start whether you have connected a second monitor (like a second screen or a beamer) to your PC. If so, it will select the two-windows-mode automatically. You can also adjust this as you want.

During the Presentation Mode

During the presentation mode, you can control the presentation slides via several ways:

  • Using the arrow keys: You can use the arrow keys of your keyboard to go forward or backward
  • Using the Enter or Space key: You can use Enter or Space for moving a slide forward
  • Pressing ESC: will end the presentation
  • Mouse Click: Will move a slide forward
  • Clicking at a song at the right selection list in the song selection window (multi screen-mode only): You can directly jump to a certain song

If you are running other programs like Libreoffice Impress or MS PowerPoint in presentation mode at the same time, you can easily switch between the presenters with Alt+Tab. When the presentation mode in Cantara gets started, it will cover the second screen and be in foreground. To move Cantara to the background, press Alt+Tab to navigate to the program you want to show up.

Save and Load Song Selections

You can save and load song selections into Cantara to share it within the organization or for preparing an event. While doing so, you have two options:

  1. The songtex-format contains the song names and the song file with its content. That means, if you export the songselection to a songtex-file, the receiver don’t need to have the songs in his song repository. While importing the songtex-file, Cantara checks whether the file already exists in the repository, and, if not, adds it.
  2. The legacy export/import function imports only the titles, that means, the receiver needs to have the songs in his song repository.