Condensing issue, Dorico 3.5

I am having an issue with condensing. Dorico is giving a result that is entirely wrong.
There are two bassoon parts.
1st bassoon plays on all beats, 8th notes.
2nd bassoon only plays beats 1 and 2, a syncopated figure, with a rest for beats 3 and 4.

When I condense, regardless of the notation option I choose for inactive voices, Dorico flips the 1st bassoon stems to down-stem on beats 3 and 4, and completely omits the rest in bassoon 2.

it also adds extraneous number designations (for 1st and 2nd bassoon).
The image is of the condensed section.
When uncondensed, the 1st bassoon is correct, with all stems in the correct direction. And bassoon 2 has its stems in the right direction as well as a half note rest for the 2nd half of the bar.

(link to the Facebook post on the same topic:

Is it possible to post the project, or just the relevant bit of it? The first obvious question is do you have an active condensing change that applies to the bassoons at this point, that might be overriding your Notation Options?

Edit: ah, you also asked in the Facebook group. Could I ask you to edit your posts to include links going both ways? That way people can easily see if you’ve already had responses before commenting.

I’m pretty sure there are no condensing changes… BUT, I’ll double check.

Somehow, god knows how, I HAD included a condensing change.
I suspect I had looked up information about condensing and had inadvertently included a change in the score (2 actually!).
Deleting these fixed all the problems.


I’m coming across a lot of little annoyances with condensing.
I too often have to re-enter notes to get it to condense properly.
I had another spot where no matter what I did, the two horns, playing identical material (a 3rd apart), with identical dynamics and hairpins, would condense but with an extra hairpin above the staff.
I copied the material from one horn staff into the other, same problem.
Then I tried doing the opposite (copying from horn 2 to horn 1), and suddenly it condensed properly.
It’s like there’s hidden artifacts or settings, for certain notes, that stop the condensing from working properly.
So far I’ve corrected most of these errors by recopying the music. but for a (so far) 16 minute piece of music, it CAN be a bit tedious.

ancillary question related to condensing:
Is there any way to get the instrument numbers (labels) closer the the staves? The default placement tends to put the numbers above any dynamics (when dynamics above a staff) which is just way too far from the staff. I can move them manually in Engrave mode, but it would be nice if this didn’t have to be done.

Also, is there an option for it to recognize a long solo passage for an instrument on a condensed staff, and have it label it as “solo”? I saw that I can change that label manually, which is fine, but was wondering if I might have missed a setting where Dorico does it automatically.

Be careful with dynamics on solo players. If they do not share the same grouping (one is blue and the other black), it won’t condense as expected. All in all, I find condensing to be a great tool to double check my work.

  • Material not condensing due to discrepancies: if some of this originated as an XML import for instance, it’s possible that different properties are set on some notes. But also things like a dynamic phrase being grouped on one staff but ungrouped (although containing the same dynamic “components”) on another staff prevents condensing into the same voice and you end up with duplicate dynamics above/below the staff. I’ve also come across situations where somehow, an extra hairpin ended up being hidden behind a separate dynamic group, which I only discovered by deleting all selectable dynamics in those bars on that staff. Setting up key commands for grouping/ungrouping dynamics, filtering for all dynamics etc can make this smoother.

  • Player labels closer to the staff – Engraving Options > Condensing

  • Automatically showing “solo” when the first player in a condensing group is playing – I don’t believe that’s possible, it’ll just show “1.”

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Merci Marc,
Thank-you Lillie.

Maybe it’s something that might come to be added to Dorico: when two staves are condensed, allow the user to specify a number of measures of only one player to be designated as “solo” rather than simply as “1.”
It’s nothing urgent since in Properties you can alter the label anyway.

Thanks for all the help. I’ll look at “Engraving Options > Condensing”.

I actually use a Playing technique for this. Because not all one-instrument sections deserve that Solo labelling :wink:
And it works ok for me.

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