Hide key signatures and detune instruments by a quarter tone

Hello,
recently I searched the forum for how to hide key signatures in Dorico. Since I couldn’t find any satisfactory suggestions for my concern, I searched for a way myself.
The method I found could certainly be relevant for some Dorico users, so I created an account and would like to present my method here.
Since I am new to the forum and have no experience, I would like to ask you to inform me if I have done something wrong. I will then gladly correct it. I use Dorico 4 in German language, so there might be some translation errors. I apologize for this.

Hide key signatures
The default key signatures cannot be hidden in Dorico. To get around this, you can edit the currently selected tonality system.
PICTURE 1
It is possible to create key signatures that do not have a glyph. The same applies to keys. These then use the key signatures that do not have a glyph. Since there are no glyphs, the following symbols are not shifted to the right in the staves.
PICTURE 2
PICTRUE 3
It is unfortunately not visible, but the key “EsMaj Cmin” created here has three “b” for b flat, e flat and a flat.
PICTURE 4
To make the key signatures visible, which is sometimes essential for editing, you can simply use any glyph.
PICTURE 5
The key signatures will be displayed in any further system if a glyph has been assigned to them, otherwise not. The functionality is exactly as if a glyph were present.
PICTRUE 6
PICTRUE 7

Quarter tone music
This method is also useful when you want to shift the tuning of an instrument by, say, a quarter tone, as is necessary for music by Ives or Wyschnegradsky.
Piano I is tuned in standard tuning. Piano II is tuned a quarter tone higher, relatively speaking. This can be achieved by the method described above. (I am not aware of any other method so far.) Both pianos have supposedly the same key signatures. Nevertheless, they sound tuned a quarter tone differently when played.
PICTURE 8
To show that Piano II actually sounds a quarter tone higher, I replaced the missing glyph with a “(”.
PICTURE 9
To achieve this result, I created a new quarter tone key.
PICTURE 10
The accidentals now only have to be shifted by +1 so that they are in the correct relationship to each other, relatively speaking. All defined accidentals can be used as usual, regardless of the key used, so that both pianos can be notated fully chromatically, although they are out of tune with each other.
PICTURE 11
To “detune” only one piano, the key must be assigned with ALT (on Windows). Because then the key of the other piano remains unaffected.

This method can be extended within certain limits.I hope this is helpful to one or the other.

Best regards
A musicologist

1 Like

Welcome, @Musikwissenschaftler , it won’t take long, until your are allowed to post pictures.

Hello @Musikwissenschaftler – welcome to the Dorico forum.

For key signatures with no accidentals that don’t affect spacing, are you aware that you can input an “atonal” key signature in Dorico? There are also various default settings for handling the visibility of accidentals, which you can also control for individual notes.

Hello @Lillie_Harris,

I am aware of these methods. I have been using Dorico since version 3 and have already realised some rather complicated projects with it. Rather, I wanted to show a way to create key signatures that have no visible accidentals, yet alter the corresponding tones.In the second step, I wanted to show how you can also “retune” instruments in this way, so that they sound a quarter tone higher, for example, although they are notated in the same way as the other instruments. I think this will become clearer when I soon have the possibility to insert pictures.

Best regards