Keep chord notes together

I’m creating a standard piano score. The melody and the chords are in the right hand, and the bass is in the left. When entering some harmony notes. Dorico will put a large space between the lowest note and the other chords. I think it is attaching it to the bass staff. Is there away to keep all the chord notes together in the close position I have them. In Sibelius, I can can grab the bass staff and pull it down to add some space and then Sibelius will keep the chord notes together like I want them. Is there a way to do this in Dorico? I haven’t seen this addressed in any of the tutorials I’ve watched and haven’t been able to articulate the issue in a search to find out how to do this.

On the whole, I have to say that I am really impressed with Dorico.


I’m not sure I understand exactly, but are you saying you want more space between the two staves of the piano? Check Layout Options–Vertical Spacing–Ideal Gaps–Braced staff to braced staff. The default value is 6; you might try increasing it to 8 or more.

You should find that experimenting with Vertical Spacing (including Minimum Gaps) should give you the results you want. Occasionally you may need to make manual adjustments using Engrave Mode–Staff Spacing, but this should be the exception, not the rule.

If you were saying that you want to move notes from one staff to another, you can use M and N for cross-staff notes, and Alt-N and Alt-M to move notes to a different staff entirely.

If that’s not what you mean, could you clarify? Or post a screenshot.

It sounds to me as if Kev914 is using mouse input to enter the notes, and he’s finding that notes that he intends to be input on the right-hand staff are ending up input on the left-hand staff, so I think your suggestion is a good one, Dan. You can temporarily make the distance between the staves larger by changing the options on the Vertical Spacing page of Layout Options. Don’t forget to change it back before you print your part.

Kev914, although mouse input is a great way to get started with Dorico, I encourage you to give some of the other note input methods a try once you feel comfortable enough with the application. If you have a MIDI keyboard, that method is most efficient of all, but you can also really fly through note input tasks using your computer keyboard once you’ve got a few of the keyboard shortcuts memorised.

You are correct. I was using the mouse to input the notes. And the bottom note appeared to snap to the left hand. It was a ledger line note, but there was a gap between it and the other notes and there shouldn’t have been since it was a closed chord. (D F A B).

I will try the things you suggest. Thanks.

I solved this by using the interval popup. I selected the F and then added a note a major 3rd below. When I used the mouse, it was attaching it to the the bass staff.

I tried the Alt-N, but it would move the note to the top of the stack.

I also have started adding notes with the keyboard, as you suggested, Daniel.

This is my first song with Dorico. I wrote it at the piano, and arranged it on manuscript paper. Still have a lot of tutorials to watch!

Thanks again, dankreider and Daniel.