Dorico: multiple Time Signatures

Dear Marc, thanks for your quick reply again. I will check these video’s; I already found them. Don’t worry, I will not bother you again with this problem.
By the way, I run Mac.

Walter, to solve your problem it should be as simple as running Steinberg Download Assistant and downloading and installing the items listed as “Dorico Playback 1” and “Dorico Playback 2”.

Marc, were you referring to this post on

I was referring to a post from Claude Lapalme, wgere I learned how to do that, and it looks like your post perfectly describes the path, I will refer to it next time someone asks for help about that! Maybe I could try and translate your post in French for those people from the French-speaking page on Facebook?

If you think it’s worth the effort, of course, go for it!
(Seeing that my post is obviously a bit bloated, I suppose that the instructions you wrote above would suffice perfectly as well, wouldn’t they?)

Here it is!

Now that’s something worth translating! Concise and precise… I didn’t know you had written this post, Claude, I must have missed it. Otherwise I would probably not have bothered to write up my post.

Thanks Claude ! I did remember it was you, and that “Jesus bleibet meine Freude” piece :slight_smile: Thanks for the link. And indeed, Florian, it might be faster to translate that post… I’ll think of it when I’ll give it some time!
Anyway, thanks to both for the tremendous help here :slight_smile:


I’m engraving part of Vaughan Williams’ Symphony 8 for a music theory article.

Is there a trick for getting this kind of multiple time signature in Dorico? See screenshot of original, and then what is looking wrong with the beat value in my engraving (and how the vertical placement of the notes is now off). My engraving is staying at e=e which is not what Vaughan William has.


Write the whole score in 2/4, and use hidden tuplets for the 6/8 note durations.

Create the 6/8 time signature change with a pickup bar of four 8th notes, so it makes a bar the same length as the 2/4 bars. Type 6/8,4 in the popover and press Alt-enter in the popover so the time signature only applies to one staff.

Then cancel the 6/8 in the next bar with a 2/4 signature, and hide it using the properties panel.

That will keep the “6/8” bar lines in sync with the 2/4.

Thanks, Rob!
Is there no other way to make this happen, other than “faking it” like this? It seems like I should be able to define the 2/4 as q.=q of the 6/8 rather than the e=e default.

If not, I’m sure this suggestion will work for now.
Thanks again.

It should indeed be possible to define the metric modulation to specify how the two time signatures relate to each other, but unfortunately that feature doesn’t yet exist in the program. It is planned for the future.

Is it correct that using this method for even one staff in a full orchestral score make huge time signatures unavailable?

Yes, that is correct.

Hi, I’m afraid I’m not so good with tuplets. How would I achieve the same barlines with 9/8 and 6/8?
Also, since the forum has been revamped, I can’t access my old account, Kerz, and I can’t figure out why.

Hi agkersley/Kerz, welcome to the forum!

For simultaneous 9/8 and 6/8 time signatures with shared barlines, here’s one way:

  • Give “everyone” the 9/8 time signature (by inputting it normally) then give the 6/8 player an independent time signature (by pressing Alt-Return when using the popover, or Alt-clicking in the panel).
  • Re-input a normal barline at the start of bar 2 (for the 9/8)
  • Delete the barline on the 6/8 staff that’s in the middle of the first 9/8 bar
  • On the 6/8 staff, input tuplets with the ratio 6:9e (six eighth notes in the span of 9 eighth notes)
  • Input notes as required, with some manual beaming adjustments probably required
  • Hide tuplets as desired (not hidden in this picture, to help demonstrate)

For reclaiming your previous forum account, @Ben_at_Steinberg might be able to help.

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Brilliant, thank you so much!:grin:
Love the forum because it’s such a supportive place here, unlike *cough cough * Avid.
The customer support was a major part of why I switched from Sibelius to Dorico lol.

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I’ve PM’d you about merging your forum accounts.

Help! I’ve tried following through this thread for the last 45 minutes, in particular working through both Claude and Lillie’s examples, but I still cannot seem to get what I need and all the ¾ bars aligning with the 9/8 bars. Essentially here, I need the whole orchestra in 9/8, and the three vocal parts only (which for the time being are deliberately the last 3 staves of the score) in 3/4. I need all the 3/4 to align with the 9/8 bars and their bar numbers. I’ve tried a number of scenarios but still can’t get this correct.

Interestingly, in a forthcoming cue, I have the same scenario coming up, but this time the Orchestra will be in 4/4 with the vocal parts in 12/8.

Screen shot enclosed.

Thanks //Tim

Hi Tim, in Dorico a quarter note equals a quarter note across all staves, so the 9/8 and 3/4 aren’t lining up automatically because the 9/8 has 9 eighth notes but the 3/4 has 6 eighth notes per bar.

In your example, just like mine further up the thread, select the first barline in 9/8 time signature and reinput the barline (press Shift-B, enter | (the pipe character), press Return). You might have another barline in the middle of the first 3/4 bars - select them, delete them. Now essentially from bar 2, all staves are in 9/8, but some have a 3/4 appearing at the start. You can then use tuplets (duplets) to make it look like the 3/4 bars have 6 eighths rather than 9. You also might have to do some manual rebeaming, especially in the first 3/4 bar.

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