Chord Symbols assistance required

*New User. I have been trying to recreate an old song which I originally created in Sibelius 6 as a training exercise. I have a piano grand staff and lyrics. How can I put one set of chord symbols above the lyrics without messing the rest of my layout up. My song starts with a piano intro which is fine, but when the lyrics begin and it suddenly creates 2 copies of the symbols, above both the piano and lyrics parts and reduces the number of staves on the page which I have carefully laid out and I thought locked in place (using engrave mode lock system). I would be most grateful for any assistance as this is driving me to distraction.

You can set a layout option or choose the “Show Chords For All” in the Setup > Voice panel while turning off chords in the guitar part; but the layout route lets you have different settings for the full score and the guitar (or in your case, the piano) part.

See also “Chord Regions” in the manual.

Left to its own devices, Dorico adds chords to all the “rhythm” instruments.

Hi Derrek,

Thank you for you very quick reply.
In the example shown the chord symbols are directly above the guitar/piano. This is fine for my piano intro part but when the lyrics come in I would like one set of symbols at the top and not sandwiched between piano and lyrics. Also when I add them Dorrico decides to push one of the staves onto the next page which is not the desired result.



In my example, the chord symbols are above the voice (albeit without lyrics). The Guitar is the lower staff. The layout setting I have shown will put the chords above the top staff (only) regardless of which staff is on top.

If you, Richard, tried to attach an example of your own, it did not go through, something that occurs for new members of the forum.

You can hide/show chord symbols for each player as Derrek has said, and you can use chord symbol regions to specify exactly where you want chord symbols for a player, if you only want to show them sometimes. I don’t think you can show chord symbols above the piano for a section, and then after that only once above the system overall using the Layout Option Derrek mentioned. However, you could set both players to show chord symbols in “chord symbol and slash regions”, then input chord symbol regions on the corresponding staves for where you want to show chord symbols.

If you want to keep music on the same pages whilst you work out how to get chord symbols how you want them, input a frame break at the start of each page and with the frame break signposts selected, activate “Wait for next frame break” in the Properties panel at the bottom. This tells Dorico to force all material between the selected signposts and the next frame breaks into a single frame (which generally means onto the same page).

In general in Dorico, it’s best not to use the staff spacing tool until as late in the process as you can leave it, if you need to use it at all. Most of the time, the vertical spacing settings in Layout Options will allow you to get a very good result without needing to move staves around. The risk with moving staves in Engrave mode is if the casting off changes, or you insert a page at the start of the layout, those staff spacing changes can get lost (as they’re tied to the page, not the music).

Here’s a great session by John Barron covering all sorts of aspects of staff spacing, that’s great as an introduction:


Thank you for kind response.

It seems that I will need to investigate the Dorico features you and Derrek suggested in the future. But as a new user I suspect delving further into application settings to do this task is probably going to beyond me at the moment I’m afraid. I am currently struggling just to remember where everything is and the myriad of keystroke combinations and popovers.

Anyway, the Chord symbols were the last thing I needed to put in for this particular song, which I originally created in Sibelius 6. I had wanted to try to recreate this rather than import an xml. But as my score is now looking exactly as I want it apart from Chord symbols, I guess I’ve fallen short and I will need to rely on inDesign to finish things off which is a shame.

Thanks again