Changing note durations

I’m currently trying the demo after using Sibelius for years and am having difficulty changing note durations. I have a XML file I imported and I’ve spent literally hours trying to change an 1/8 note tied to a 1/2 note to a dotted 1/2 note. At one point pressing (.) or selecting the dotted note did nothing, then it started to give me a 1/2 note tied to an 1/8 note. Removing the ties at one point erased all the notes as did deleting the 1/8 note that was added. I finally got the desired result by erasing all the notes and reinputting the figure from scratch. BTW I don’t know that it is relevant, but I am using an Amazon powered Mac book pro. Also I’m confused by the rhythm grid, I’m in 4/4 meter and there’s 11 mark’s.
Thank you,

Welcome to the forum, Marty.
I remember the feeling of confusion when I converted from Finale.

An important point to understand is that Dorico treats tied notes as a single note of the total duration. To make the change you want, just select the tied note, press 7 then (.)

An alternative method: after selecting the note, hold alt+shift (on Windows) and use the left/right arrow keys to reduce or increase the duration in steps defined by the resolution of the rhythm grid.

The setting for the resolution of the grid is in the bottom left corner of the screen.


Is it possible that you have this set to a dotted 16th note? That would give 11 marks in the grid.

Another thing to be aware of is that Notation Options includes many options under Beam Grouping and Note Grouping, which control the appearance of the music.

Some settings that are imported with an XML file can override settings you make in Dorico. To avoid this, there are options in Preferences. I would recommend unchecking all these options to be sure that Dorico is able to work as intended.


Hi. This increase or decrease in windows sound good.

hold alt+shift (on Windows) and use the left/right arrow keys to reduce or increase the duration in steps defined by the resolution of the rhythm grid.

Can we do this on the mac? What are the key combinations please?

The Alt key is often called Option on Mac, so it’s basically the same: Shift-Option-left/right.

Select the tied note. Press u (to cut the tie), o (to force duration) 6. (to select dotted 1/4 notes).

Sorry, but I don’t think this is what the OP wanted to do.
As I understood it, he just needed to increase the duration of the tied combination by one eighth note and have it display as a half note with a dot.
(I just tried your suggestion, and I end up with two dotted quarter notes separated by an eighth rest.)

I think the OP’s statement that I quoted is unambiguous.

This topic has been discussed in detail on many threads.

Much appreciated, apparently Dorico gets quite perturbed when you want to mess with a tied note. Untying the note made it much happier.

Oh and somehow the grid was set to dotted sixteenths and gave 11 subdivisions, Thanks

I think perturbed is a bit strong. I’d suggest strict, especially when trying to cope with the vagaries of xml file imports.