Does Garratan Classic Pipe Organs work well in Dorico?

As given in title.

Hello Richard,

Ah … another Garritan Libraries user :slight_smile:

ARIA Player works beautifully in Dorico so any of the Garritan libraries you have installed and showing in ARIA Player will work superbly in Dorico. I have a few including the GCPO, GPO5, JABB, Harps and CoMB. Do you have any others in addition to the Pipe Organs?

There are just two things I would mention, the first is that Dorico has a VST plugins ‘White List’ and the ARIA Player would need to be added to this which is very easy to do. The second is that for expressions in playback, Dorico needs user-created “Expression Maps”. Again, this is easy to do and needs to be done just once for each instrument you use.

If you do need any help with these I, and others here, would be only too pleased to help including sharing expression maps.

Best wishes,


Thanks for the reply Michaelb, I have Garrantan Orch 4 but haven’t tried to run it through Dorico yet. Garratan is having a weekend sale on software so I’m temped to get the Classical Pipe Organ.

The Garritan Pipe Organ might require more configuration of expression maps than some other Garritan instruments in order to use the organ registers effectively.

Derrek is right. Be warned that it might be sketchy, since there is no way to set your own playing techniques with which to change registration on the fly, during playback. As of now, you’re restricted to the default vocabulary of playing techniques, meaning you can, at best, assign unrelated techniques to the library’s proper keyswitches.

Sweetwater Music has it for $60 right now – pretty sweet deal if you ask me. I’m even considering it for myself.

I have to admit, LSalqueiro’s comments give me pause. I would need it to be fully functional.

Define fully functional. There are workarounds, for the time being.

I listened to the audios on garritans site…
hmm, I guess there must be a reason for it to be under 100$… Is it sufficient for real organ enthusiasts?

That also is reason not to get it.


Dorcio isn’t quite ready yet to deal with managing a complex organ that’s built like this Garritan Library from a single grand staff (possibly with a third bass pedal line and other temporary staves, etc.).

Garritan’s Pipe Organ library is well worth the price for a ‘tracking style’ DAW (I.E. CuBase Pro); however, at this time you’ll probably find it immediately lacking in combination with Dorico UNLESS you:

A. Use lots of staves in your score, and many instances of ARIA. Since the Classic Organs library doesn’t come with a good ‘console’ to emulate organ stop changes, or to independently control dynamic pedaling for ‘each rank’, and since Dorico cannot yet ‘channel/instance bounce’ from the same stave, then you’ll need to use many staves, and possibly many instances of ARIA to manage your stop changes. Any rank that requires independent dynamic pedaling from the rest of the organ will also need his own stave.


B. Use something like Bidule (The VST Plugin version), which would allow you to bounce around between stop configurations (again using multiple instances of ARIA, but hosted in Bidule). If you have something like Bidule, you could manage a pretty complex Organ from a single stave in Dorico. (Side-note, I’d expect that Dorico will learn to channel bounce from the expression maps in future versions, so a third party app like Bidule will no longer be needed at that point). Bidule could also allow you to do a bit of fancy expressive controller transformation on the fly (I.E. If you only want CC1 to crescendo the flute rank for a given set of bars, and leave all the others where they are). Bidule would also grant the ability to do complex keyboard splits, and things of that nature. In short, it’s a swiss army knife for transforming MIDI/Audio in real time, and merging multiple plugins into a single seamless instrument.


C. Learn enough about SFZ opcodes to tweak out your own Organ profiles that could be swapped about using the key-switches and/or CC events that Dorico supports in his expressionmaps/techniques system. It’s not terribly difficult to copy/paste from existing GCPO Organ patches and build something new that would merge several ranks into a single instrument, and have each rank’s volume controlled by a unique CC.


D. Think of it like one would with a Tracking DAW and manage it that way: Keep different flows or separate projects for ‘playback’ vs ‘printing’ purposes. In this scenario, every possible rank in your arrangement gets a dedicated stave. If you want a rank playing, then your put the notes on the corresponding stave. This workflow would give you optimal playback control, with independent dynamics for each rank, etc. This scheme would also give you more control over the management of effects (built in reverb in ARIA, plus effects you might like to add in Dorico’s own Mixer inserts).

Fully compose out every note for every possible rank in your ‘playback’ version of the project. In your ‘printed’ version, don’t worry about playback at all…just go with your preferred grand staff setup, and make it look right!

Garritan Personal Orchestra (GPO5) has some nice pipe organs included as well, and these actually have consoles where you can build your ranks, drive them over a single MIDI channel, and manage them using CC events. Of course you would need to set them up for your piece, and teach Dorico how to use them with expressionmaps. I wish Classic Pipe organs had come with such a console, but it doesn’t. Instead, you simply set up your ranks across 16 slots per instance and set their channels.

So…yes, you can use it with Dorico, and it should not be very difficult with a little practice. Without any third party helpers like Bidule, then you’ll want an independent stave for each rank configuration in your piece. In Gally mode, you might have many dozens of staves, but in page mode any ‘empty staves’ will be hidden. So the workflow would be something like this:

  1. Build your organ sound for a passage in an instance of ARIA.
  2. Make a Dorico stave for that set of stops.
  3. Compose in dorico until you need a new stop arrangement.
  4. Start a new instance of ARIA and build your next stop arrangement.
  5. Start a fresh new stave in Dorico and direct it to this new instance.
  6. Compose on the stave…
  7. Wash, rinse, and repeat for as many stop configurations as your piece needs.

Note, you could also experiment with making use of multiple flows in Dorico that each point to different ARIA instances (if you run into situations where extra staves don’t hide properly in page view).

If you have something like Bidule at hand…inside Bidule, you’ll still be managing multiple instances of ARIA. The difference is that you could work with a single stave in Dorico, and teach Dorico and Bidule to hop configurations using key-switches and/or CC events. In this scenario, Bidule serves as the missing ‘organ console’.

Finally, the SFZ format isn’t very difficult to learn and that is what most Garritan Libraries are built with. It is possible to throw together ARIA patches of your own using all the sample content that comes with Classic Pipe Organs. It’s not for everyone though…as it’s not a GUI based method of building your own patches…all in text editor.

I have to admit, that does not sound appealing at this time.