Making a worksheet with blanks below a staff

Hello everyone,

I tried looking this up, but all I could find at the moment was regarding aligning text in a text frame, or horizontal-aligning dynamics.

I am trying to make a worksheet for roman numeral analysis, with blanks beneath each downbeat. I tried using shift-X to add “_____”, and to change it to appear “below” the staff. However, once I go to Engrave, I was hoping to cmd+click multiple blanks and somehow align them horizontally (back in Sib7 I could align any highlighted objects horizontally or vertically).

Perhaps I’m missing something obvious…! Any help would be appreciated.

Thank you.


You should find that if you move the text below the staff by flipping them and set the Avoids collisions property to be switched off (so that the text doesn’t avoid collisions), all of the text items will be at the same vertical position. You can then move them all further away from the staff by changing the value for the default distance from the staff on the Text page of Engraving Options.

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Thanks, Daniel! That’s really helpful. Just realizing how much better Dorico’s workflow is for this!

You could alternatively use lyrics for this, as they are automatically positioned below the staff and align in a row. However, Dorico automatically interprets standard _ characters as elisions so instead you can use e.g. the “full width low line” _ character, add a couple of these in a text editor, then paste that into the lyrics popover.

If you want these to be quite wide and it ends up putting pressure on note spacing, there’s an option in Setup > Layout Options > Note Spacing to “Make space for lyrics”; deactivate it to tell Dorico not to consider lyrics for horizontal spacing at all. There are also properties in the bottom panel to control the alignment of lyrics, e.g. if you wanted the line to be aligned with the start of a notehead and extend to the right rather than be centered on it.

Thanks Lillie! I’ll try out the “full width low line” lyrics option; that might be less dragging/selecting once I’m in Engrave.