Organ / Keyboard Particularities

Like many other things, there is an easy work around (using first-stave indents and text boxes) however as is common in organ music, it would be nice if you could name the stave labels for Manuals/Pedal separately. Currently Dorico shows “Organ” for all 3 staves. There is no doubt that this is a good starting place, but in the setup menu I couldn’t figure out a way to label the pedal and manual staves separately. I was able to do this in one score that I had imported as XML and thus the manuals and pedals showed as two “instruments” for my organ “player”. But that is the singular instance where the option has been presented in a native manner.

Another not exclusively-organ particular, but something that affects contrapuntal keyboard writing to be sure: forcing Dorico to display rests in each voice. I’m attaching a screenshot of a piece I am working on now. You’ll see that in the left hand there is only one rest at the end of the measure although there are two distinct voices and I have made a concerted effort to add a rest in each voice. I did not find anything in engraving options when clicking on the rest that does show, nor did I find anything under the rests category of the engraving options menu as to allow for both rests.

I think this may also be a bug, but I cannot get the accidentals of the Eb / F# to switch places. I think it is proper to have the # closer to the F with the flat symbol on the outside (it is also this way in the source score I am transcribing.) I tried adjusting the voice column index but that wants to switch the noteheads even when I exclusively click on the flat/sharp symbol in engrave mode.

To label the manuals and pedals separately, for the time being I suggest you create the ‘Organ (2 staves)’ instrument, then add a single-staff instrument below it and edit its name to be ‘Pedals’.

You can choose whether or not rests of identical value in opposing voices should be shown as a single rest on the Rests page of Notation Options: look at the ‘Rest positioning’ section.

And to reverse the order of accidentals, select the notehead in question and in Engrave mode, edit the ‘Accidental column’ property (not the ‘Voice column index’ property).

As usual with most things related to this program, you are one step ahead of me! Thanks for the insights :slight_smile:

I understand from someone else on the forum that it is already possible to integrate Dorico & the pipe organ “VST” program Hauptwerk. Has anyone done this yet and if so, can you describe how to get them to work together? While I’m well versed in Hauptwerk and comfortably versed in Dorico, I am totally at a loss for how to configure them together. This is simply not anything I’ve ever done.

  1. Launch HW and in General Settings/Audio outputs make sure the divisions on the left all have their output device set to ‘Hauptwerk VST Link’ and their dedicated channel. (it may be something with AU… on Mac - there’s a pdf describing this in the HW docs) [this step is not important if your HW setup uses a dedicated soundcard, i.e. different from Dorico]

  2. open General Settings/MIDI ports and make sure ‘Hauptwerk VST Link’ is selected in the column Sequencer Midi In.

  3. Load the organ you want to use and open Organ Settings/Keyboards… and make sure each manual on the left are set to a unique Midi Channel - Pedal: “Direct input from your…” / MIDI IN port: “any” / MIDI channel: 1 - continue with same settings for 1st, 2nd, 3rd etc. manuals, giving them Midi channels 2,3,4…

  4. Make sure the HW VST Link is whitelisted and work in Dorico.

  5. Start Dorico and configure your organ player. Say for an organ of 2 manuals and pedal. Since we cannot yet change Midi channels on staves you have to give the Organist 3 instruments, and adjust their naming. You can use a Bassoon for the pedals and piano or 2-staff organ for each manual. In order to have correct staff labels along the way in Page view, it’s probably better to add this organ as 3 players…

  6. Go to PLAY mode and under VST instruments on the right, click on Halion Sonic SE and replace it with ‘HauptwerkVSTLink-64bit’ (or the Mac equivalent). Open the organ on the left and verify/change the Midi channels so that they correspond to the setup in HW (Pedal channel 1, 1st manual channel 2… etc.)

  7. Go to Galley view and enter the score… :slight_smile:

thank you fratveno! as usual, your knowledge astounds me! If I didn’t know you to be a private user in Norway I’d think you were part of the Dorico team half of the time!

Example of one hand playing on two staves (or I should say manuals):

Oh Cam… While it was grotesque sounding, at one point he was playing on all 4 manuals. The best man at my wedding frequently does the same type of finagling. Sometimes two voices on the same stave are sufficient with stems in opposite directions although I’m still waiting (along with all the Liszstians) for added staves for clarity.

He should try playing one hand on two staves on a theater (cinema) organ with “double touch.” Eight parts all with independent tone colours, if you can manage it with both hands at the same time :wink:

Plus another four parts on the pedals - two with each foot…

He does have double touch on his touring organ and dual zones on his pedalboard too, although, tbh, in his case he ends up trying to do too much.

Technique to spare. But to what end? How many notes can I play at once seemed to be the guiding principle.
It seemed frenetic and the music suffered. What ever happened to less is more?

I suppose Carpenter might calm down a bit one day and start using his technical skills for making music. But it hasn’t happened yet IMO.

Still, if he gives a few kids the idea that “a pipe organ” is not something in a church that is only played (slowly and badly) by your grandmother, he might be sowing some seeds for the future.

I’ve never met an organist who as “100% sane and normal” - anybody sane and normal wouldn’t choose the organ as their instrument!

1 Like

“I’ve never met…”
Hmmm. I’ll have to do a spot of self reflection. I didn’t think I was less than sane…but now that I think about it…

What’s the difference between an organist and a terrorist?

Sometimes, you can have a successful negotiation with a terrorist.

I think the key word here would be “sometimes”.

Unlike the (possibly apocryphal but entirely believable) story of a cathedral organist who was almost sacked following a disagreement with the powers that be, but finally was retained - and marked the occasion the following Sunday by playing an improvisation on “Fixed in his everlasting seat, Great Dagon rules the world in state” from Handel’s “Samson” as the closing voluntary.

Clever and relatively safe since most wouldn’t get it.

There’s a famous story about Langlais (or Litaize; can’t remember now). He was improvising the prelude and the priest decided he had had enough and started the collect and an annoyed Langlais threw on the chamades and played for a few more minutes just to remind the poor priest who was really in charge!

I’d probably be with the priest.