Can't Use Immediate Dynamics in Expression Map

So— I cannot get immediate dynamics to work with expression maps. I’m creating an endpoint for an instrument that corresponds with my expression map, which is mapping ‘f’ and ‘p’ to keyswitches in the VST (Halion 6). But-- whenever the ‘f’ or ‘p’ is encountered in the score, nothing is triggered.

I can get articulations to trigger (e.g., ‘pizz’), but not dynamics, even though ‘f’, ‘p’, etc. are listed as available available techniques in the ‘playing technique’ dialog within the expression editor…


That’s correct, Bryan: at the moment, Dorico doesn’t emit playing technique changes for dynamics, but this is something we’re thinking about for the future.

Hi Bryan,

I would be interested to know which plugin or sample library you’re using that maps dynamics to a keyswitch - could you tell us more?

Hello Paul,
Orchestral Tools- Berlin Series ( Strings) is one of the libraries that have patches with keyswitched dynamics.
Another one is Cinematic Studio Strings but there the switching of dynamics like sfz is set to a Control Change.
I think this is enough. :slightly_smiling_face:
Here you can see a screenshot:

Best regards,

Although these seem to be associated with dynamics, they seem just as likely to be articulations applied to the attack of various dynamic settings.
Many musicians interpret sfz as a form of accent rather than a dynamic like piano or forte.

These these are dynamic envelopes, rather than actual dynamics, but thanks for sending the info - maybe we’ll be able to drive those automatically in the future.

Umm…Halion 6 has dynamics keyswitches-- look at the ‘Clarinet XXL’ or ‘Baritone Sax XXL’ patches. :slight_smile:


Paul hello,
In my personal opinion, would be very helpful for the team and Dorico if you collaborate with at least the major VI dev companies like
Orchestral Tools, VSL, Spitfire Audio, East West, Native Instruments, Cinesamples… in order to improve the Dorico’s Playback and the Expression Maps.
From many replies posted by the team members on the forum I came to the conclusion that the whole team isn’t familiar enough with the most widely used virtual instrument libraries. This is of vital importance if you would like to provide us properly working Playback, and easy to configure Expression Maps.

Best regards,

1 Like

Hi Paul,

This is exactly what I was wondering here.

I have an unpitched percussion with dynamics on different keys. At the moment, I can’t trigger those dynamics using dynamics playing techniques in percussion map (ppp, pp, …, fff).

Are there any plans for this feature in future versions of Dorico ?

What would be a quick workaround meanwhile ?

What do you mean by “different keys”? If you are using different keys on a MIDI keyboard to generate different instrument sounds displayed as a kit or grid, you will likely need to create a layout that allows you to assign dynamics to each specific instrument on its own single-line staff.

For example, in a drum kit, assigning a dynamic to the five-line kit staff will not apply to individual members of the Drum Set. To do that, one has to display the Set/Kit as single-line instruments at least long enough to input your desired dynamics (which will then not show up when displayed as a kit.).

It’s a simple tam-tam, with E4 being the lowest dynamic, and G5 the highest.

I just wish that ppp triggers the lowest dynamic (so E4 key), and fff the highest (G5), and all intermediate values of course.

The problem is that in percussion maps (but also in expression maps although not concerned here), we can assign dynamics playing techniques ( ppp, pp, …, fff ) to these keys, but writing fff in the score actually does not trigger anything during playback.

This is what is implied by OP and confirmed by @PaulWalmsley a year ago, hence this question to know if there are some updates on this feature I may have missed.

There haven’t been any updates in this area as yet.

1 Like