Dorico Weirdness - non 4/4 bar


I just encountered a measure in Dorico that is not an exact 4/4 length. This was a file that started as an XML import. When I check the bars popover there is a weird number entered there. If I try to delete this weird bar, all music after it becomes chaotic with strange durations, rests, etc. When I view it in PLAY mode the bar looks different.

Is there anyway to fix this? I can attach the file if that helps.

Screenshot shows bar in question and after I delete it!


Devin Thomas

Screen Shot 2020-05-13 at 2.30.41 PM.png

Sometimes this is caused by a tuplet somewhere that didn’t round off completely and by correcting it (on a copy of your file?) with Insert mode on will start to solve the problem.

Unfortunately if the rhythms get really badly corrupted like this it’s not really practical to fix it in Dorico. Ideally we’d need to see the original MusicXML file to see why it’s in such a state.

One reason for this sort of mess is when Sibelius exports MusicXML with multiple voices, tuplets, and clef changes. For some reason it exports a “backup” element a few ticks long (often 22) before the clef change and a corresponding “forward” element after it. Maybe this is to get the correct horizontal position of the clef correct in Sibelius itself? Who knows…

My guess is that something is getting confused whether the “backup” and “forward” are consistently inside or outside a tuplet, and/or both in the same voice, in the MusicXML data.

Editing the MusicXML data to remove the “backup” and “forward” elements around the clef often fixes it.

Thanks for the reply, however the file did not come from Sibelius. It came from Digital Performer. I have imported a number of files from DP without this issue, but perhaps it’s triplet related as you stated. For some reason triplets seem to be very problematic for notation software! I was able to fix the problem in Dorico by activating the Insert tool, adding additional bars in front and behind the problem area and deleting it in mass!

Thanks again to all who replied!

Devin Thomas