Descriptive tempo MusicXML expected behaviour?

Just wondering what the expected behaviour in Dorico is when a MusicXML file is imported (in my case from Sibelius) where the original combines a specific tempo marking with a description. For instance allegro ma non troppo crochet = 96. It seems that Dorico will first look up the beginning of the description such as allegro and if it finds a match will set this as the tempo. The specific given tempo is then ignored.

Is this written into the MusicXML description or is this something Dorico-specific? It seems to me that the logical behaviour is to use the specific tempo when given as there is no standard for assigning specific tempi to descriptions as far as I know – or even if there is, users can ignore it (which is certainly the case of a file I’m looking at for a friend where the given metronome bears little resemblance to Dorico’s own descriptive tempo dictionary).

My main point is it would be great if Dorico were able to read the metronome mark and ignore the description.

A smaller secondary observation is that in two places in this score, the tempo change directly after a fermata is pushed back a couple of bars . I can’t find consistency here but in case others have found similar behaviour, it might be worth mentioning in which case I could test further.

MusicXML doesn’t have a great way of encoding text associated with a tempo, so Dorico uses heuristics to try to interpret the text and metronome marks as well as it can. It uses the same parser used by the Shift+T popover to try to determine what tempos to create, but I’m not entirely sure why it would end up preferring a textual tempo over an explicit metronome mark when they both appear. I’ve made a note to spend some time looking into that when I have a bit of time.

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many thanks, Daniel – I was guessing that Dorico was trying to use the same logic as in the parser. It’s not something that particularly concerns me personally but there are still plenty of Sibelius users out there to convert to the cause and of course the less work required on a MusicXML import, the more likely they are to switch.