How to Automate Precautionary Naturals Over Several Measures?

I am transcribing atonal music for orchestra and I have to introduce cautionary accidentals in all parts.

By default, an accidental affects all notes of the same pitch in the same octave within the same bar. Dorico also displays cautionary (or courtesy) accidentals, which are shown
In different cases, like the first occurring note in the following bar in any octave.

I need to automate the application of precautionary natural signs for notes that reappear several measures after being altered by an accidental. This is crucial for maintaining clarity in the atonal context.
I am wondering if Dorico allows for the creation of Custom Rules for Accidentals that could facilitate this process. Is there a way to set such rules to automatically apply precautionary naturals over extended measures, or would this require a different approach?

Any help would be appreciated.

There are different conventions on how naturals should appear in the notation options (per flow). Maybe you want something that’s the closest to the 2nd viennese school approach offered there?

Hi Klafkid, thank you so much for your response. I tried every alternative offered in the notation options but couldn’t find what I wanted. The 2nd viennese school and the modernist approach offered some solutions but they are limited to the measure you’re working on and the next one. I need to put a natural in the next appearance of the note regardless of the amount of measures it takes to appear.

If the score had one long measure, the modernist approach would solve the requirement. I wander if it is possible to solve this problem.


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Dorico only adds automatic cautionaries on the bar immediately after. I too would like more options with this. The one I end up manually correcting the most is this situation:

I assume this could either be handled by a setting to reset cautionaries after X number of bars, and/or a setting to ignore bars of rest when considering cautionaries. A simple X number of bars approach would help in situations like this one:

The obvious downside of a simple X number of bars approach is a situation like this, where setting the “reset” at 2 or 4 bars for example isn’t really sufficient, so I would think some sort of consideration of multibar rests would need to be addressed too:

If you always want the accidental to appear, regardless of the number of bars, perhaps there could be a setting for that too.

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You could always speed things up by creating your own key command for Toggle Accidental Visibility (which would invoke a cautionary wherever you needed one).


Yes, I have “toggle accidental visibility” set to Shift-1. I’m using it constantly for a variety of scenarios that can’t be covered by a setting. Key command makes short work of it.

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When I switched, I had too much muscle memory from Finale.

I programmed that to numpad * back when I first started using Dorico and never changed it.

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