MusicXML export

Will the first release of Dorico support exporting to MusicXML?

Yes, it will.

Our approach to MusicXML export is only to encode the semantic musical data, and not to include layout-related information. Exporting a project from Dorico via MusicXML will allow you to import it quickly and cleanly into another application for further work, including the major document setup tasks (page size, stave size, margins, system layout, etc.). Some basic placement information (e.g. whether a slur is above or below, etc.) will very likely be encoded, but otherwise the MusicXML will (intentionally) be pretty “raw”.

How will the Dorico MusicXML export handle “title page” text - text that precedes the first note. Perhaps this is a restriction of MusicMXL, but I know exports from Sibelius include the text, but don’t include even an indication of the number of pages preceding the music. That information will also be missing in the Dorico “raw” MusicXML?

I’m afraid that kind of information is not encoded in MusicXML files, so there’s nothing in particular that can be done about it.

Just a small correction - MusicXML 3.0 does handle title page text. There’s room for improvement, though, which we hope to address in the future at the W3C Music Notation Community Group.

I stand corrected, thank you, Michael. I see that you can set the page attribute for a credit-words element to imply this. Well, we’ll certainly consider this for the future, but since it’s not our intention to be capturing fine details of layout in the MusicXML we export, but rather to capture the broad semantics of the music, this falls outside our current areas of interest in this regard.

I probably asked the wrong question (although I expect the answer is the same). I really should have asked about MusicXML import since I’m more interested in getting scores into Dorico than out of it. But I don’t know how well Sibelius, Finale, MuseScore, etc. export tittle text. It may not matter how well Dorico handles the import.

Dolet 6 for Sibelius unchains your music by letting you save your Sibelius 5 and 6 scores as MusicXML 3.0 files. Together with Finale 2014.5 or Dolet 6 for Finale, you can share your music created with Sibelius with people who use Finale, with higher accuracy than ever before.

Just a small correction - MusicXML 3.0 does handle title page text. There’s room for improvement, though, which we hope to address in the future at the W3C Music Notation Community Group.

Dorico is not a miracle worker when it comes to MusicXML. Clean, well-formed MusicXML will import well, though we explicitly do not make any attempt to preserve fine graphical positioning data from MusicXML. Aspects like overridden spacing, slur control points, stem lengths, etc. are all ignored even if specified in the MusicXML file. Coarser graphical information like slur placement (i.e. curving up or down), tie direction, stem direction, dynamics placement, articulation placement etc. is imported but can be removed to let Dorico do its own thing.

The philosophy behind this is that none of the existing applications are able to export this information in a consistent fashion, so it’s not worth trying to make sense of it; instead, we have devoted enormous development effort into making Dorico’s default layout – both at the macro and the micro level – as good as possible, so that the result you get from importing a MusicXML file is more or less the same as if you had typed that music in yourself from scratch in Dorico, and benefit from Dorico’s superior automatic default engraving capabilities.

Im very interested in XML import also to bring scores in from Sibelius. So it seems, if Im reading this correctly that using the Dolet 6 plugin will handle saving the title page text in Sib, but once it gets to Dorico Im not sure how its then handled, based on the above.

Thanks Bob

I wonder how many composers have ever actually transferred their entire catalogue from one format to another? It’s far from a trivial job, particularly for anyone who’s been a “power user” of their notation software. Or for anyone who hasn’t quite kept to the rules of appropriate Text Styles etc.

It’s like using PhotoScore. Occasionally it ends up with a (slightly surprised) “Well, THAT went well!”. But too often it’s quicker to start over from the printed copy.

Well my 400 scores went fairly well from Sibelius to MuseScore. Dynamics did often need the (painstaking in larger scores) task of adjusting, but the notes and other layout features went more or less flawlessly. I would like to hope an import into Dorico would go at least as smoothly.

I’m at an even more basic level, still with Sibelius 4, and resisting the move to Avid till I knew what was happening with the new project. Am I going to be able to convert and access earlier files, or do I need to bite the bullet, upgrade to a newer Sibelius, and move to Dorico at a future date?

I believe you can run an older version of the Dolet plug-in in Sibelius 4 that will allow you to export at least some of the musical data in your Sibelius files. You need the Dolet v1 plug-in for Sibelius from here: