I regularly use “p” for playback: for individual instruments, for sections, and for the entire orchestra.
I love the ability to audition sub-sections of the orchestra. But when I want to hear everyone, and click on a note somewhere to start, it’s too easy to accidentally click on a note PLUS a lyric, or a note PLUS a slur. When I do that, it auditions just that player.
Basically, what I’m saying is that it’s too easy to accidentally solo a player. I’m on a hi-DPI screen, which allows me to see the whole orchestra score quite nicely, but it’s difficult to discriminate with my mouse clicks.
My suggestion is that clicking on the empty space in a bar (which selects every item in that bar) should be what solos that player when P is pressed. But if it’s a note (even if it’s a note plus a lyric, or a note plus another little element), auditioning the whole ensemble should be the default behavior for P.
Thanks for the consideration.
This is a tough one for me - I’ve experienced the same thing, so I know what you’re talking about. But I also am trying to get used to this behavior and go with it, instead of fighting it, because it can also be useful, and it is consistent: a single note plays everything; a multiple selection plays the solo player. No ambiguity, but it can also be frustrating.
A similar thing happens to me when I try to select a note tied across multiple bars, by clicking on an empty part of a bar after the tied note begins. The note only gets selected if you click in the bar where it begins. I can see why Dorico does it this way and I’m trying to get used to it - this behavior is consistent with Dorico’s view of a tied note as a single object, and it can be useful. But is it the best behavior? I don’t know.
I found this somewhat frustrating too. But I think I’m getting used to it after some use. I would still change it in a heartbeat if I could, though.
And a similar problem happens when you click on (what looks like) a single note, but it turns out to be a unison with two voices. There’s no way to tell whether you’ve selected one note or both when this happens, as only the single notehead turns orange, not the stems. You only find out which you’ve got when you press P and you either get one staff playing, or the full score.
When I want all instruments to play I always click on a bar line to avoid ambiguity. The only limitation is that - for whatever reason - this does not seem to work at the beginning of a system, so for this you have to select bar line at the end of the last bar in the previous system.
A couple of other tips: try selecting a dynamic or a system object, as these tend to have more space around them and you won’t have multiple ones at the same position. Also if you’ve accidentally selected more than one note, or selected a whole bar, then try pressing the left arrow to set the selection to the previous one. (I haven’t tried that, but I expect it would work). Don’t forget that there’s also a key commands for ‘play again from the same position as last time’, which can be useful.