Master page edits not applying to parts

I have made changes to the Default Part master page, click apply and close. But the changes aren’t reflected in the parts. Most of the parts had been previously edited in the engrave mode before I learned to use master pages. I have checked thus:

  • looked at each part in engrave mode and removed overrides
  • looked at each part’s Layout to make sure the master page set is “Default Part”

What else am I missing?


When you re-open the Default Part master page to edit it, does that reflect the changes you made? Or are they reset there as well?

Make sure that you’re editing the correct handed page: when you open the master page editor you will see both the left-hand page and the right-hand page, and you need to be sure you’re editing the page with the same handedness as the actual page you’re expecting to see the changes on in the layout itself. (This is what the L->R and L<-R buttons in the master page editor’s toolbar can be used for, by the way.)

Dan - yes
Daniel - I was editing the left page, the parts I assume are left page. regardless I clicked on the Copy L->R button and now the pages are updating properly.

Thanks for the speedy help!

I’m a new Dorico user and find that I can’t figure out how to apply master page/default part changes to the actual music parts … specifically, I am trying to get rid of the “project title” and “part name” and move the flow name up to the top, and leave space for tokens for composer and arranger where necessary. …

but after I edit and change these settings in the default part master page, it doesn’t show up in the sample music/parts I have entered.

Any thoughts on where I can search in the help files (or get help from you folks) to figure this out? thanks.

Dear jakeysworld,
If you have edited the parts masterpages (by double-clicking the masterpages on the right panel in Engrave mode) and no change is done in your actual document, chances are that you have overrides that prevent Dorico from updating your material. Check the top right panel pages in Engrave mode, if there are red corners on the pages, that means there are overrides. Right-click the pages and remove overrides, and you should notice that they follow the masterpages templates now.

Also, make sure you’re applying these edits to both sides of the master page template (left and right). You wouldn’t be the first person that had edited the left page, neglected to apply to the right page (using the L>R button at the top of the master page editor), and not realised that parts normally start on a right page…

Thank you pianoleo,

I was careful to copy left and right of the master page edits so that what I’ve done on one side copies to the other.

I also read about the page overides in the scoring Notes post about how to use master pages.

What I am observing is that what appears as the “music” in the engrave window doesn’t look like either of the master page layouts I’ve set up. – true there are some of the elements there, but not in the order that I have put them in in the master pages.

My project is so tiny I have just saved it and attached it here.
Moldavian Tune Book for forum (383 KB)

and … sorry, for not being clear about the page overrides – no red triangles in the corner that I can see (well one appears when I create a page in the “part” layout, but I’m assuming that is because there is not enough music to spill over into a second page). anyway, that’s the least of my worries at this point

Here’s what’s tripping you up:
You basically have two different options for how to display the start of a flow that’s at the top of a page:
a) a First Master Page
b) a Default Master Page that utilises a Flow Heading.

At the moment, you have elements of both, like so:

The stuff at the top is from the Master Page, and the stuff underneath is defined by the Flow Heading.

These (current) Layout Options explain why you’ve got the weird mix of stuff you’ve got:

Dorico’s currently set to use Flow Headings for every flow, but you weren’t aware of Flow Headings so you’ve built that information into the Default Master Page.
The Layout Options here are set to hide the Flow Title and Page Number on any page where a Flow Heading appears, so that that information’s not duplicated.

Your choice here is either:
a) Turn off Flow Headings - you’ll get exactly what you were originally expecting.
b) Reset your Default Master page and edit the Default Flow Headings (by double-clicking in the relevant bit of the right panel) and rejoice in the fact that flows can start anywhere on a page and automatically have title/subtitle/composer information (or whatever else) automatically positioned in the right place.

Holy Cow Pianolio!

Your explanation is worth the price of admission to Dorico. I think it’s fairly safe to say that it would have taken me ages to figure this out on my own—the paradigm shift is pretty massive from Sibelius and I have been finding that I don’t even know the right questions to ask.

But you’ve answered several here. I had noticed that there was a flow heading dialogue box on the right hand grouping in engrave under the other master page elements. I could see that it was highlighted, but didn’t grok at all how they were all connected to each other. What you write makes perfect sense, and I think what I see now is that if I want to keep the “informant / lyricist” and “composer/collector” information with each individual tune (i.e. with each flow), then I should place those tokens in text boxes within the flow header section. I can then reserve the default and first master pages to contain book-wide information.

I rejoice in the fact that flows can start wherever they land on a page, and that it will therefore (likely) be possible to put two tunes on one page while keeping the relevant information not just in close proximity, but with a consistent layout—and not with tedious workarounds in Indesign! The inability to do this kind of thing in Sibelius by using the backstage information is one of the key limitations of the software for the kind of work I’m currently doing and what my organization would like to pursue in the future. That Dorico is able to accommodate this is why I was moved to make the switch.

It has been a trying day but I am quite literally overjoyed.


That phrase is probably literally every new Dorico convert, ever. :wink: I had about three weeks of that sentiment (the first bit, I mean).

It’s my pleasure. It was kind of possible to fudge this stuff in Sibelius, but if you wanted your song/flow/movement title as a Header on each page, it was exceedingly laborious: by the end of a 20-flow document you’d end up with 20 different superimposed Headers, 19 of which would have to be hidden!

A good rule of thumb is not to expect Dorico to work like Sibelius (or Finale, for those who came form that program). Dorico has its own approach and needs to be understood on its own terms. Coming to it lately from another program means a lot of catching up, if only with the concepts. At least you have the advantage of Lillie’s excellent work on the manuals, which earlier adopters had to compile in their heads from Daniel’s blog posts, release notes, and contributors to this forum.

Hi Derrek,

Thanks for the note. I don’t expect Dorico to work like Sibelius (I came because there are things that I know Sibelius can’t do or has a hard time doing). I I know that one of the biggest hurdles in making the transition is understanding the philosophy – which is precisely why it is hard to know where to look to figure out how to do things in Dorico that sibelius does and I know dorico does. For example. I couldn’t figure out from the manual how to move a note up and down on the score using a keyboard command once I’d put it in. In Sibelius, you use the up and down arrows.

A poster here clarified that you use the alt+up/down arrows. Super simple, but if you don’t know where to look in the manual, or how to describe your issue within the conceptual framework of Dorico philosphy, you’re in the cold.

I totally get that it’s going to be like that for a while … it has to be. It doesn’t make it any less frustrating during the transition. I am glad to know the forums are here to help bring folks into the fold.

Regards, JW

This is an interesting point you’ve raised: this is documented under “changing the pitch of individual notes”, which I’ve differentiated from “transposing” using the Transpose dialog, even though technically it’s also transposing notes (basically, because I would expect people would think about transposing large sections but changing the pitch/octave of a single note or a couple of notes). Visually, what’s happening is the notes are moving up and down but semantically, the pitch of those notes is changing. I’ve now added indexterms for “notes>moving” and “moving>notes” for future documentation releases.

In general, I would recommend searching for what you want to achieve (e.g. notes being a different pitch) than how you expect that to happen (e.g. moving the notes) because how Dorico achieves that might be different than you’re used to - but also, you can always ask questions here or in the Dorico Facebook group and someone will help you :slight_smile:

Hi Lillie,

thanks very much for your reply. After getting a very helpful answer/explanation of the master pages/flow heading issue I was initially stumped by I’ve been making great progress figuring out how to do things.

I see your point that “moving” a note up and down on the staff is in essence transposing, but the way that I often use it is part of a step input process for repetitive but slightly complex rhythm patterns – say a 2/4 measure with one eigth note triplet followed by a dotted eigth/sixteenth combo. rather than code for the triplets and dots every time, I’ll copy and paste measures and then visually move the notes around (i.e. up and down) to find the correct pitches (either by sound or visually). I know this is a kludgy way to do things, but there are situations where it is actually faster than inputting by only using the laptop keyboard.

anyway, i’m sure it will all make a lot more sense in a couple of weeks.
regards, JW

not kludgy at all. if you are repeating a rhythm pattern but have somewhat random note patterns, this works quite fast. If there is a pattern, you can highlight the notes and use the interval popover with the t option, ie shift-i, t m3 will raise the highlighted notes a minor 3rd; t-M3 will lower a major third, etc. Use that first, and then tweak the remaining notes

If you have a keyboard, setting lock-duration allows you to repitch a section very fast.

also, use r to replicate rhythm patterns.

It’s not quite so fast if you “visually move the notes around (i.e. up and down) to find the correct pitches (either by sound or visually)” rather than knowing what you want to write.

As Kodaly said, the most important skill musicians should learn is to hear with their eyes, and see with their ears. That is the biggest time saver!

Dear Rob,

In this particular project I’m reproducing tunes from handwritten and printed sources, and I know the melodies very well, but it’s a matter of reproducing rather than composition. I had learned the step-input keyboard shortcuts for sibelius for the complex rhythms but haven’t quite sussed it yet for Dorico.

Regards, JW