Importing into Dorico


Does Dorico have a build in intelligence importing Midi or XML, i.e. analysing note length, note pressure, legato …

Thanks in advance for your lights



MusicXML doesn’t include any playback information of that kind (it can include some basic information about the MIDI device, channel, and in the case of virtual instruments, the specific patch it should use, but nothing more detailed on a per-note basis, at least not that any application I’ve ever seen actually exports).

Dorico doesn’t currently retain all MIDI controller information etc. from imported MIDI files, as it doesn’t yet have a way of representing these in an editable form in Play mode, but that will come in future.

Hello Daniel
Thanks for your answer

Asking this question I was thinking :
When Dorico, finds :
-a short note it is putting in the score a staccato articulation change

  • the same note short and repetitive it send an articulation change for repetitive note
  • two consecutive notes it is putting in the score a legato articulation change
  • a long note it is putting in the score a substain articulation change
  • a Pizz program change it is putting in the score pizz articulation change

    Up to the user to define the note length for each transformer
    In Logic X they have the Midi transformer menu that could do that

VSL has what they call “Performance” patches analysing how the notes are playing, but as they do not know what note is next, so some times you get unexpected results.



P.S. Looking forward to test Dorico after the Expression Mapping to VSL is fully operational because I cannot wait anymore that Logic handle articulation changes in the score

This is the sort of analysis that we hope to add to MIDI import in future versions.

Hi Cyril,

I was delving a bit more deeply in Dorico with VSL this morning. Hopefully this can throw some light…

When importing into Dorico from MusicXML, musical symbols like slurs, staccati, accents, marcati etc. are obviously imported, but no corresponding Playing Technique (PT) definitions are set up for these. (unless you use Halion). Expressions such as pizz., arco, spiccato etc. are ignored. You have to enter them, and define them, in Dorico.

No. Currently you cannot define your own PTs, so you can’t define a key switch to select a performance repetition patch in VSL. (You may be able to find a rarely used technique and define it for such a purpose, though.)

Dorico apparently uses the Natural playing technique as the default, which normally is returned to if you write arco for strings. Commonly this is set to the VSL sustain patch, which works as bow change legato. ATM, Dorico cuts off these notes (and adjusting length doesn’t work yet) producing some kind of detaché… As soon as Dorico interprets slurs, these can be set to switch to the performance legato patch in VSL.

Dorico has no musical intelligence similar to Human Playback in Finale, so it will not try to determine what playing technique should be sent based on the notation and tempo relationship itself, which e.g. can be useful for such things as note repetitions, tremoli and spiccato. If you want spiccato in Dorico you have to enter a PT. Currently you can’t hide them if they are obvious, but Daniel mentioned in another thread that it will be possible later on, when they can be replaced by flags.

As already mentioned, playing instrutions in imported files are ignored, but you can add pizz. in Dorico and it’s understood and triggers correctly. It is also correctly cancelled by arco. Other articulations, however, are currently not cancelled by norm., ord., nat.