Number Pieces

Hello everyone!

Wasn’t the live Introduction to Dorico stream just fantastic! Congratulations to Daniel and the whole team!

My question is: I’m working on a piece at the moment which uses a very similar system to John Cage’s Number Pieces. So rather than standard notation, he uses small ‘cells’ that have time markings indicating when a player should start and stop playing their pitches etc. Catching the last half of the introduction video (so apologies if something like this might have been demonstrated near the beginning of the video), it would be presumed I could set up these ‘cells’ using flows and lay them out on the page accordingly?

I’m really interested to hear how I would go about achieving something like this in Dorico. I’ve attached a .jpg so hopefully you can see the sort of thing I’m after.


I think you could reproduce that page pretty easily in Dorico, by creating each cell as its own flow, and then positioning music frames just where you want them on the page. If I get a minute (probably unlikely today as it looks like it will be a busy day) I will try to set out that page in Dorico and attach the project here so you can see for yourself.

Hi, I’ve made a quick project in Dorico of the John Cage piece you mention to show you how easy it is to use flows to achieve the result you are after. (295 KB)

Excellent! Well, when I caught the last half of the presentation last night, Dan had placed a very small flow above a block of text at the bottom of a page of music. Furthermore, he was saying how short or long flows can be, so by the sounds of it it would be just a case of organising the cells/flows how I see fit! I’ll soon find out when I get home and purchase it! Thank you!

Yes indeed, check out what my colleague Ant was able to do in a matter of minutes to reproduce the page you attached.

One word: Wow!

Being a pretty proficient cough sibelius cough user, I knew that it would take more than minutes to produce something like that in that program! Thank you for the attached document, super helpful for the project I’m working on!

For exercise I tried to set the example in Dorico by myself, see attached file. Unfortunately, there is always a page 2. How can I get rid of this page? (276 KB)

If you edit the ‘Default’ master page and delete the main music frame (identified as MA) from those pages, page 2 will disappear.

That’s the solution, thank you very much!

this seems not unlike how I would do it in Andreas Press’ score: put each cell on its own track with its own left to right margins for the staff or staves and move it to anywhere you would want it to be on the page.

worked through placing fragments into separate flows and placing them on the page as layout frames in engrave mode. wow. never got into understanding this until now. wonderful. it took me a bit to figure out what ma and la, lb, lc were, but pretty obvious once it was understood. when putting a frame on the page I could choose any one of the frames to be placed but can simultaneously check any or all of them; yet only one shows. I assume that not one flow can be displayed per frame.

next, want to understand master pages and pages much better. looking forward to hiding staves within a single flow a la stravinsky, boulez, stockhausen, etc. it’s like waiting for the morning to come on christmas eve.

You can display multiple flows on one page. The option is in Layout options, Page setup, Flows