best strategy when copying tenor voice in tenor clef


we have discussed this before, still I don’t have a working solution yet, which isn’t a workaround.

I do a lot of copying choral music which is notated in traditional c-clefs (canto-, alto- and tenor-clef) plus bass-clef.
You can see an example on the attached picture:

I have initially setup Dorico with a 4 part choir ensemble. Then I usually change the keys to the ones of the original source.This is my way so I can easily proofread my input. When it comes to inputting the tenor part, the music is displayed an octave higher. I finish inputting the tenor part (with audio feedback in the right octave). Once I am through, I then select the complete tenor staff and move the music down an octave. This is for preparing for proofreading. Obviously I will get red note heads for notes out of range, this I can ignore. Now I will be doing the visual proofreading of that tenor line. Of course I can not „proof-listen“ at this point - as the audio is an octave too low.
Once I have finished the complete score I will eventually give the singers modern keys. At this time I will be giving the tenor a modern g-clef (with the 8), so I will have to select the tenor line and shift it into the right octave again.
If someone knows of a more streamlined way to do this?

Rename another Alto voice to Tenor, so you can use the Tenor C clef at sounding pitch. When done, do a “Change Instrument” to Tenor Voice with Tenor G Clef.

Craig, thank you, life can be so easy… best workaround so far :slight_smile:

There must be a good reason for making the octave transposition a property of the tenor instrument rather than of the clef — but for the life of me I can’t see it. Anybody care to enlighten me? It seems just weird. (And it forces you to jump through these ridiculous hoops!)

It’s quite common (and not exactly incorrect) for guitar/double bass/piccolo/glockenspiel staves to be printed with a regular treble clef. No double bass player is going to play everything “up the octave” because the little “8” is missing.

If the octave transposition in Dorico was a property of the clef, it would presumably be a different set of users that had to jump through similar hoops.

yes pianoleo, agreed. For the tenor singer though can’t there be another solution, for the reason that the tenor-c-clef should not get off an octave? May be it is too complicated…

Of course. Thanks, Leo.

I always thought it was simply because tenors like to think they are singing an octave higher than they really are :smiling_imp:

This was never an issue when tenors (and altos and sopranos) used the clefs named after them - but I guess notation has been dumbed down since the time when even keyboard parts were often written in C clefs.

Absolutely, Rob. A tenor is not a transposing soprano. We saw this discussion before, didn’t we… :slight_smile:
I always take one of the ‘normal’ singers and assign a custom transposing G8-clef (found here).

The problem treating Tenor as a transposing instrument appears to me to be that Tenors so often are combined with other voices (predominantly baritones and basses) on one staff.

(Perhaps the reason the Tuba is not considered a transposing instrument is that for so long it has shared a staff with the third trombone in orchestral scores.)

I also use “Voice” with the custom G8-clef. I anticipate that one day, we’ll be able to edit and create clefs and instruments.