Schenker and suggestions

After a bit of trial and error, I’ve managed to do Schenker in Dorico:

Honestly it really wasn’t as bad as I expected it would be. There are several voices, and I made a custom notehead set to make eighth notes look like beamed half notes:

I used MusAnalysis for the all the text, input as lyrics.

A few things that would make this easier. I realize it’s not exactly a common use case, and perhaps these requests wouldn’t apply to other situations, but I’ll share them anyways.

  1. Option for lyric input to advance by rhythmic grid. This would be far-and-away the most helpful improvement. At present, lyrics have to be entered at the correct rhythmic location, which means note input and switching to the lyric popover. It’s not too bad, but I also have to be in the same voice, or else the lyrics don’t align.

  2. Lyrics don’t move when they’re edited… Well, this one is already coming in Dorico 4, so yay.

  3. Masking options for beams. There wasn’t anything I could do about this, at least in Dorico.

  4. The ability to make any note into any notehead, regardless of its duration. The custom notehead sets have certain (understandable) limitations, since they’re semantic. It would be nice to be able to make one eighth note one notehead, and the next one a different notehead.

Edit: Dorico file attached for your entertainment. You need the MusAnalysis font installed.
Schenker.dorico (451.9 KB)


Very impressive, Dan. Your examples with MusAnalysis and now Schenker makes my hands itch to start analysing music more and more!

The Ursatz of what are we looking at here?

Rondo alla Turca.

One thing you haven’t had to deal with was the up/down beam which I got stuck on and gave up eventually… The mid-kneed beam is a bear I don’t know how to solve.

Also, masking is a huge priority.

You mean centered beams? That’s dealt with here: Centered beams - Dorico - Steinberg Forums

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Messing with notehead sets? No thanks. Last time I tried to do that I couldn’t get a new set to choose from; it just changed all of my current noteheads. I look forward to finding something a bit less hackey in the future.

It’s not that bad, truly. And it’s worth learning how the notehead set editor works, since it can come in handy in a lot of other situations. Basically, you have to create a new notehead set before editing it.

Most importantly, you need to add new noteheads and remove the default quarter note notehead. If you edit the default quarter note notehead it’ll update it in all notehead sets that use that specific notehead (just like editing a frame on a master page that’s “based on” another master page).

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You’re supposed to guess, or rather interpret :slight_smile:

I think this is one of the more un-intuitive aspects of Dorico. I imagine most new users will assume a “New” notehead set would be a new set that could be created and applied where they want, not an existing notehead for them to screw up. It would be useful if Dorico could skip this first step and just give the user a new quarter notehead instead of giving the unsuspecting user the opportunity to mess up their score.


When I create a new notehead set from an existing one, it always changes the notehead of my current score.

If you’re creating a new notehead set based on an existing one, any notehead that’s lifted from the “based on” set will remain linked.

The advantage to this is that if there are noteheads you want in both sets, all the work’s done for you, and if you subsequently decide that you need to alter a notehead wherever it’s used, you only need to do it once.

If you want a different notehead for e.g. quarter notes and shorter, do not edit the existing (linked) one - create a new one and remove the old one from the (new) notehead set.

Leo explained the process, but I agree this seems unnecessarily confusing. If you’ve created a set using New from Selection, next you need to select the notehead you want to change and click Notehead/New from Selection. This will create a new version of that notehead than isn’t linked to anything in use in your score already.

The newly created notehead will be to the right of the original one, so click the original (left) one and select Remove Notehead from Set.

After removing the notehead that was still linked to the noteheads in your score, you can now edit all you want without changing existing noteheads. Obviously you’ll need to repeat these steps with different durations.

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This may be confusing, but it is parallel to the nature of frames in Master Pages: if you copy them rather than creating a new one, the copied frame remains linked to its original.

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I agree. New means new and not related to anything else. The fact that it’s still related to the default notehead and can change it makes this very confusing.

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