Easy way to play in harmonies atop an existing voice?

I have a feeling I have probably missed something really obvious. Let’s say I have a staff that I intended for “Trumpet 1 & 2”. But I initially entered a line only for Trumpet 1. Later I want to come back and add the second trumpet notes that will be exactly the same rhythms as the Trumpet 1 part.

I was hoping there would be a way I could set the cursor to the first note and then simply start playing the Trumpet 2 notes on my MIDI keyboard.

I have tried various combinations of the Chord button and the Lock Durations command bot nothing really works. When the chord button is lit, it ignores the duration of the exciting notes and does not advance to the next note. The Lock Durations seems only to work when changing a single note (i.e. not building chords).

Ultimately I copied the part to a blank staff, changed the notes, then selected both parts for a paste special -> reduce. I’m hoping there is a much better way to accomplish that.

Any ideas?

With chords mode on, you need to press space bar to advance to the next note. In the example you gave, I would simply copy trumpet 1 and paste it to downstem voice 1 in the same staff. Then use lock duration on that downstem voice (check the icon on the caret), you should find this really straightforward.

Thank you. I think where I was going wrong is that I didn’t know when the Lock was on. I didn’t notice the lock button in the toolbar. And I also didn’t know the trick about pressing enter when in chord mode to advance.

In my case, I want the notes to end up in the same voice. I see two good procedures for doing that, and these procedures both work within a a single staff (i.e. no need to copy material to a separate staff temporarily):

  1. Copy the first line, then paste special into a new voice. Then edit that voice with the lock duration on and chord off. After the copy, the second voice is selected. You can simply play MIDI notes into that line and it will replace the note in the current voice without changing the duration. Then select that entire passage (for the second voice) , cut and paste back into the first voice to get the notes to share stems.
  2. In note entry mode, click on both the chord (Q) and Duration (L) buttons. You can play one note at a time, however, because you are in chord mode, you must press ENTER to advance to the next note, otherwise notes start building up on the same chord.

I like option #1 for long passages where the harmonization will be mostly modal, as I can adjust the notes for the entire passage with alt-Up or alt-Down, then adjust individual notes. Option #2 is very easy for short passages because you don’t have to mess with cut and paste.

Actually, another reason why I use two distinct voices (even if I get two stemmed notes when they play the same thing) is because I anticipate that condensing option that might arrive next year (or next, if needed) and it should easily transform two instruments into one staff. With distinct voices, it is fairly easy to select one voice and paste it to another player…
Do exactly what you feel suits your needs better, and merry Xmas!

True, but I do hope that when this feature arrives, it will support both the case where we condense into separate voices, and also the case where we condense into chords sharing stems – in cases where the all the condensing parts have the same rhythms.

Doubtless that’ll be the case.

Currently I do as Marc does, and I’m methodical regarding upstem and downstem voices… it’s then easy to filter and expand out to part scores. But a robust condensing feature would certainly allow for flexibility in chords and multiple parts sharing stems, since that’s common parlance in conductor’s scores.

Not sure if this will help you or not, but do you know about “Add intervals popover”? See https://steinberg.help/dorico/v1/en/dorico/topics/write_mode/write_mode_notes_add_intervals_popover_r.html

…which I’ve mapped to Q, since I don’t care for chord mode. Q, 3, enter. Done!

Ahhh, yes. Now I do remember seeing that at the point when I was completely overwhelmed by Dorico. And then it completely slipped my mind.

This looks like a very powerful tool, and one that I need to take the time to master.

Thank you for that reminder.

As an aside, I am liking the “select more” function. That multiplies the benefit of other functions that operate on selected phrases.