direction for contemporary classical composers

I do not mind buying the present version to help support development. It is not usable for me at the moment. I imagine it will be. I hope that sibelius and finale was not the basic model. I had used score. it is truly an engraving program and would allow you to have any number of staves on a single page and control of the length and placement of a single staff (perhaps cutout score on steroids). I still am not sure how engraving works with poor documentation but perhaps this could be done with multiple mastersheets or frames and more flexible staff design al la score. problem must be that some of us use te program as a composition/notation tool and not a DAW, so realtime playback is not a major issue.
what I can’t find in the present version, which may be just a documentation issue:
no cutout staves; no flexible stave left/right size and placement
no multiple voices on a single staff
no box/circle shapes for custom contemporary nations, etc
many of the key commands don’t seem to work
no ability to hide anything for custom notations
a lot is made of the fact that one enters music without the necessity of time signatures then add these; but what if one wants a sequence of time signature music, then free music with much hidden a la sibelius and back again?

right now there is only hope but for me it is not usable for much. perhaps we can dust off the winscore program and try and jump start into the 21st century.

another defunct program that can still be purchased is from graphire press (music press), which has much of the flexibility of score. oh, well. trying to please everyone only makes a really ugly camel.

I love the saying “tying to please everyone only makes a really ugly camel” — perhaps similar to the idiom we have about a camel being a horse designed by committee.

We don’t have proper support for cut-away scores yet, though this is definitely on the list for the future. Likewise, being able to use frames and other enclosures for cells of music to be repeated or improvised in a Lutoslawski-style fashion are not yet included, but I hope we’ll be able to add these in the relatively near future.

If you want to switch back and forth between metered and unmetered music, simply create an open time signature (Shift+M for meter, then type X into the popover); you can choose to hide the X if you wish via Properties. When you want to go back to metered music again, simply create a regular time signature at that point.

You can have as many voices on the same staff as you like: Shift+V to tell Dorico you want to start a new voice, and thereafter just V on its own to switch between the existing voices you’ve created.

I don’t know what language keyboard you’re using, but we’re hard at work on trying to sort out the problems with some keys on non-English keyboards not working as expected. It’s a complicated problem but I’m confident we’ll get to the bottom of it before too long, and I hope that it will be fixed in time for the first post-release update, coming before the end of November.

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not sure where to find properties for X signature mentioned above.

Select the X time signature, then open the Properties panel at the bottom of the window (Ctrl+8 is the shortcut).

one other notation possible in others that would be important: beaming half notes and quarter notes (possible in sibelius) needed for contemporary notation.

why don’t you just use a group of eight notes and change noteheads to whatever you need?

the idea is what is possible in score, music press, sibelius, etc in which time is not determined by meter but by the spacing of the notes across the system. for example: there might be 30 unevenly spaced notes on a system to be played in 20 seconds. half note heads would be longer (in larger spacing) and quarter note heads would be shorter (with smaller spacing. in the other programs it would be easy to put the notes on the page (eighth notes maybe too closely spaced and the reason for the quarter notes). of course, one could space stemless notes on the page without beams, but maybe the beams make it easy to see your part compared to other parts; and putting all of the parts under one beam makes this even more evident (George Crumb, Black Angels).

how do you distinguish a beamed quarternote from an eightnote (or smaller) ?

I see what you mean. Not sure how it’s done in Sibelius. I come from Finale.
BTW, can you post a specific page of the notation you have in mind?

If one is unfamiliar with this notation, it is discussed at the end of Gould’s Behind Bars.

Just to be clear, at least some of what you brought up can be done right now in version 1.0:

no cutout staves

I’m not quite sure what you mean by this (perhaps just because it’s late and my brain is asleep) but I believe you can accomplish what you want with music frames in the layout tab, if you look into it.

no multiple voices on a single staff

You can do this by hitting Shift-V while in edit mode (caret visible). There’s also a menu item that allows you to turn on “voice colors” so that every unique voice receives its own color in the staff. It makes it a lot easier to track things.

no ability to hide anything for custom notations

Anything can be hidden actually. When you select an object in engrave mode, it will have a ‘Color’ property on the bottom of the screen. If you enable that and click on the color box, you can set opacity to 0%. This can be used for any selectable object.

did discover the sift v to add another voice. great.
daniel did reply that cutout score was not possible yet but probably on the future agenda (most of the programs do it).
he was sure about floating staves a la polish composition school, etc. for improvisation. might be. the score program does it well. I tried to hide a rest in engraving mode by making it white, but nothing changed. Am I doing something wrong?
thanks for your response. all of us are in extreme learning mode. program gained many brownie points by being able to use different key signatures and meters in different voices. a real plus. The future is exciting and of course all of us are anxious (and maybe I am more anxious than most because I am older than most and have less time to wait). thank you again.

to make the series of visual rather than metered rhythms in sibelius:
make a large measure and hide the meter. put down a series of (maybe a mixture) of half and quarter notes (could use only eighth notes).move them visually so they are irregular within the large “measure” and give it a time (maybe with a box at the bottom with a time in seconds). then take a beam object and beam all of the notes together. the performer then reads the durations as they are visually placed in the system.

cut-out score was common in stravinsky for example, but popular in making floating staves possible in score by control the left and right margins of a staff. One can have several floating staffs within a box from which a performer(s) could randomly choose these fragments over a given time (probably in seconds). I thought that this might be available now but apparently not. This can be simulated in sibelius and others, but is done best in score, where the staff fragments can truly float and not aligned.

excited to see that different meters and key signatures in different voices is possible in dorico, now.

Hi Daniel, may I ask how to delete a voice on the same staff?

You can’t delete a voice entirely, just delete the notes/chords it contains, and once it’s empty, it will no longer appear at all.

Thanks for the X meter, Daniel! By the way, are we going to be able to add this with the Create Time Signature box on the right (like be able to type “X” in the number boxes under the Regular/Aggregate… option box) ?

Also, as said in Facebook, it would be nice to have the option “One staff only” in this option box, so it will be more obvious that we can do a polymetric piece like the one you posted in Facebook (you must have thought of this already!)

Yes, at some point we’ll make it possible to create an open meter from the editor on the right-hand side. At the moment we have some nice tight validation on those boxes to only allow digits and the plus sign, but we’ll need to relax it a bit to allow you to type X into those boxes.

Thanks Daniel, I’m wondering if the ‘delete a voice’ function will be in the future list? I think this function might be useful, like if you want to delete some certain voice(s) of a multi part piece, you just don’t want to delete the voice(s) note by note right? :blush:

many things are clearly going to be available soon but it is difficult to tell what is presently available.

things are many esoteric and useful articulations for useful for specific instruments (winds, strings, etc). I do not see piano pedals as symbols to place under a piano part and stretch as needed (i imagine that they will eventually play). also, symbols such as wavy lines often used to visually extend repeated patterns over visual time. hard to tell what is now and just don’t know how to get to it.

Pedal lines are coming. They’re not there now. That’s been mentioned.