Chord symbol playback as arpeggios: one fairly simple way

I find it very useful to enter/play back chord symbols when creating a melody. The built-in block chords are useful, but I often prefer to hear the chords as arpeggios. One obvious solution is to assign an “arpeggiating” instrument to Chords.

I’ve looked around for a while and recently found a combination which seems to work well with Dorico 5. As a bonus, it can be done for free.

  • Download/install Kontakt if you don’t have it (free Player version works).
  • Download/install Heavyocity Foundations Nylon Guitar for Kontakt (there is a free version which works). It includes an arpeggiator which is simple but adequate.
  • Assign the Chords playback to the nylon guitar with arpeggiator enabled.

The installations involve quite a few steps but I find them worth the trouble. The Dorico part is pretty simple and straightforward.

I’m really enjoying Dorico 5 a lot - still a beginner.


Welcome @techworker1

Good ideas.

If you want to get more sophisticated, you could use generate notes from chord symbols to convert those chord symbols to notes for an instrument in your score. Then control your arpeggiator through an expression map and switch it on and off with custom playback technique. (I do this using Omnisphere)

This has the advantage that Dorico applies some reasonable voice leading to the chord progression, (which it does not when playing the chord track) and you will likely get a more musical arpeggiation.

1 Like

Thanks @Janus for the good information. That sounds like the way to go for performance purposes. There are many capabilities that I haven’t explored yet.

Right now I’m just using chord symbols as a brainstorming helper (quick and dirty, lots of changes).