Elision ligatures in Dorico?

One of the nice little features of Sibelius vs. its competitors is intuitive entry of lyric elision using the underscore character to connect two syllables under one note:

I’m sure you know where this is going. :^) Are plans in the works to facilitate realtime entry of these ligatures in Dorico? In Finale, you have to type the character Shift-I and then go back into the lyric editor and convert these in a separate pass to the Engraver font (Shift-I in the EngraverFontSet is the elision character). Functional, but an awkward workflow.

Thank you.

It’s very simple in Dorico: simply enter an underscore in the lyrics pop-over, and it will be automatically converted into an elision when the pop-over closes and Dorico creates the lyric. (Dorico also automatically smartens quotes and converts a succession of three full stops into an ellipsis character in lyric input as well.)

Excellent - I was hoping this would be the answer! The automated smart/curly quotes and ellipsis sounds useful, too. Thank you, Daniel.

Could I express the hope that this substitution will be tied to the actual underscore character (_) and not, as in Sibelius, to the keypress Shift-hyphen, which may produce various characters depending on keyboard layout?

It is indeed the underscore character itself, because in Dorico you do not enter the lyrics directly into the score: you enter them into a popover, and Dorico parses the input when you advance to the next position and turns it into the appropriate lyric item, which includes drawing a slur (not using a font character but actually drawing a slur in the same way that regular slurs are drawn), replacing straight quotes with the appropriate curly ones, and so on.

Yay! I assume you also support en- and em-dash entry (perhaps two hyphens versus three?).

Will any substitutions be user-definable (eventually), e.g. “©” for the copyright symbol, or perhaps the ability to remove the default substitutions? (I’m not sure what other substitutions might be useful, but perhaps different quote styles depending upon the language of the lyric text…)

At the moment we don’t convert – to an en-dash or — to an em-dash, but it would be easy to add, as would converting © into © (though on Mac at least all of these are sufficiently easy to type that I wonder whether it’s worth it).

Well I’d like – and — as simple input for en and em dashes. Using several programs I keep forgetting the correct keystrokes so multiple dashes would really be simpler and quite intuitive.

If you are a Windows user, that might be of great help; for Mac users, em- and en-dashes are quite simple to type on most language keyboards, and it is always the same in any and all applications: For English, you have a regular dash (-) at the usual spot (top-right, next to zero), the n-dash (–) is option+dash, and the m-dash (—) is shift+option+dash. Introducing substitutions for – or — may be counterproductive, if one wants to deliberately write that instead of — .

I agree that on the Mac the en- and em-dashes might not need an explicit substitution, but on Windows there is no easy way of entry–the workaround for true proper dash entry would be ridiculous. Is use both quite frequently (both in lyric entry and in “normal” text boxes, e.g. footers: “ComposerName – NameOfPiece”).

Cases like this (or cases where, as Predrag suggests, a user might actually want – or —) are why an editable list (obviously post-v1.0) might fit the bill. These entries could be present by default, and Mac users that don’t want them can delete/disable them.

Here’s another suggestion—I see that in the Engraving Options under “Lyrics,” there’s an option for “Elision slurs for East Asian lyrics.” Well, those languages aren‘t the only ones that could benefit from it! For example, in some hymnals that I use as source materials, a word like “power” sung to one note is rendered as “power” with a slur underneath, as opposed to spelling it “pow’r.” I’ve never seen a notation program that’s been able to do this (or at least not without a lot of trickery)—might that be a future feature for Dorico?

Yes, it should be possible for us to add a property that allows a slur to be drawn under an existing lyric syllable. I’ll add this to our list.

I’m bumping this topic, since it hasn’t come up in a while. I don’t yet have version 3 of Dorico, but has drawing an elision under an existing Western-alphabet syllable been enabled, or is it on a future roadmap? Right now my workaround for achieving this has been to export a score to a PDF file, open it up in Illustrator, copy an elision character from another score, paste it into the PDF document and manually move it into position, and then save the edited PDF. Doable, yes, but it would be nice to cut out this additional step.

Dear Kent,
I admit I do not understand your question. As Daniel states in post #2, it has always been possible to draw an elision ligature in Dorico, if you input an underscore (_) between syllables. What is it exactly that requires you all these workarounds ? Can you post a picture ?

I could be mistaken, but I suspect he might mean an elision within a word as opposed to between words. In that case, the elision symbol goes beneath the letters instead of between them. I see it a lot in hymnals, e.g. attached pic.

I have to say, I’d be all in favor of adding this functionality (as well as the ability to edit the elisions in engrave mode, since they’re drawn just like regular slurs) and a few other bits and bobs related to the engraving of hymns. I seem to be working on a lot of them as of late.

Thank you for that picture. I never work on hymnals, only opera or songs, and this is something I never come across. I hope Daniel will come with some solution for these bits and bobs!

Ah, hymn 543 in the ’82—you got it, snakeeyes021, that’s exactly what I’m looking to imitate. I think I do a good job by going into Illustrator and adding it after the fact, but it would be nice to save that step.

That does look very lovely.

I was going to recommend trying to re-purpose a laisser vibrer tie to keep the solution in Dorico, but turns out that will actually not allow itself to be placed underneath the lyrics (at least this is the case in Dorico 2, so I assume 3 as well).

In a pinch, you can always use a standard slur and adjust it in engrave mode, but it’s a little unwieldy. I’m attaching two different versions, because you can slightly adjust the thickness. I did notice however that anything more than -1/8th, and it started getting thick again, but like, inside out…
word elision in dorico thickness adjusted.png
word elision in dorico.png