Dorico 3 Condensed Scores

I wonder how Dorico will handle orchestral scores with 8 French Horns, where each 4-note chord is played as 2+2+2+2. Will it require writing on 8 separate staves or just 4 (2 Horns per staff)?

yes, I read this. It doesn’t really answer my question regarding French Horns playing in unison pairs.

Actually, it does. If the horns always play in unison pairs, then you really have only four parts. It’s just a labeling challenge. But if at any point the pairs split up…

Note paragraph three. If your 8-horn section is playing in unison, will it require writing the same music on all 8 staves? Yes. But will that require a lot more work than writing it on one staff? No.

this is exactly what I mean, only four parts, but each played by two instruments. I wonder if labeling of the condensed staff could accommodate this.

If you genuinely have only music for four horns but you expect it to be played by eight players, I don’t see how that’s any different than simply writing a violin part for your violin section: the number of actual players who will be playing the part makes no difference to the notation.

It’s not different except for the labeling. If in this case all 8 Horns play a unison, will the condensed staff show “a 8” or “a 4”?

If you really have eight horn players and they are all playing the same material, then yes, the staff will be labeled something like “Horn” and the unison music will be written with the label “a 8”.

This is really exciting. Is the condensation configurable? For example, could it be written in two staves, each a 4:




Also, can a condensation change mid-system, such as to change the staff of a middle part?

By default Dorico will collect up all adjacent instruments of the same type and condense them, but you will indeed be able to change the groups to be condensed so you can set up groups of interlocking horns. The condensation can change along the width of the system, but the players assigned to the staff cannot differ. (I’m not sure how this could make sense: you’d want a player to start on one staff and then move to another staff halfway along the system?)

This “instruments of the same type…”

Are voices considered to be of the same type - so that SA / TB can be written on two staves? If so, can lyrical variations be incorporated?

At the time of writing lyrics are not handled yet, but it’s certainly in our plans for the feature to allow you to create condensed choral scores.

Thanks Daniel

I hope it will be possible to define, if 2 parts, which are condensed onto 1 system, will be shown as one voice or as two seperate voices (like ib chorale settings).

I agree that this does not really make sense mid-system. But here is an example where they change across pages/frames in Mahler 1, movement 3: where horns 3.5 and 4.6 change to horns 3.4 and 5.6 from one page to the next (see screenshots).

(PS: I’m not asking for this kind of staff assignment for Dorico 3. I just had to engrave this last month and so the score was at hand when I saw this topic)

Provided your horns are all in the same group, then that kind of change from system to system will be no problem at all.

Though it doesn’t happen often, I disagree that it doesn’t make sense to move players from staff to staff in a condensed score on the same page. I’m only familiar with the Hal Leonard method of doing it, which involves the number of the instrument and a line to indicate where they’re moving. I’ve attached an except from a Hal Leonard published score where the 2nd horn gets moved around on a page. It also happens with the trombone section in this same score. Of course, if you can do it on page turns, that’s great, but it’s not always feasible.

I’ve only had to do this a few times in my engraving life, but it can make sense to do so.

Well, you won’t be able to use Dorico’s condensing feature to do that, I’m afraid :slight_smile:

Daniel, understood - I just wanted to make sure I provided a published example that wasn’t contrived by me!

For clarification sake, does your statement imply just the first bullet, or more of the second?

  • Condensing as it stands today doesn’t include a the ability to do this

  • Given how condensing has been implemented, this kind of ability isn’t possible without a feature redesign (which isn’t going to happen)

I know asking you to speculate is bad form, so no worries if you can’t answer - just want to understand, since I do occasionally have to do this.