[SOLVED it myself!] Playback by Group

The third time is the charm. My third serious attempt to migrate from Notion to Dorico has “taken.” Finally!

I noticed in Write Mode it is easy to select from the top dropdown a single Player for individual playback. I hadn’t been aware previously that there was such an alternative to selecting for discreet work and playback. Much easier.

It occurred to me that I might be able to add multiple Players to a Group in Setup Mode and then be able to select the Group in the dropdown. Unfortunately the dropdown does not list any Groups (unless I’m missing something, which is entirely possible!).

It would be really helpful to have Groups available to select in the Write Menu dropdown. In this case I was working with a choir and wanted to easily work on my SA parts as one Group, then switch to my TB parts as a separate Group.

Even more important than this test case, I can see how it would be helpful to have the quick option to isolate all Brass, or all Horns, or Woodwinds for discreet work. This would seem a natural extension of the benefits of Groups.

I just realized I might be able to accomplish this with Layouts. Will check. Back in a moment.

Yes, it works! I can add a layout and it is selectable from the dropdown menu. Great!

The ability to create special Layouts with multiple Players that can then be selected in Write mode is a marvelous boon for Composition. Previously I had thought Layouts was something that would only benefit engravers, of which I am not one.

As someone who wants to use Dorico for composition, if while I’m working on an orchestral composition I want to work on an ad hoc group to get things just right, balance, orchestration, etc., I can simply create it. And I can either leave the Layout in place for future selection or delete it if things get too cluttered in the dropdown. Notion was quite clumsy when it came to displaying groups in the score. You could do it, but you had to go to Setup and check or uncheck checkboxes for each affected part. And there was no way (I could tell) to then quickly recall your custom Group.

Terrific feature that helps make Dorico a better tool in this regard.

You can also click to select measures, and press P, and it’ll play just that instrument.

Love this feature also. The only thing missing to me (as we’ve discussed) is an ability to “Focus on Staves” (as in Sibelius) while still hearing the other tracks (since with the Layout approach, you only hear the subset of instruments you’ve grouped in the layout, vs. Focus on Staves where you see the subset you want to edit but still hear the whole score, which can be useful) - unless one keeps two Layouts (one containing all instruments) open at the same time and then inelegantly clicks back and forth for playback vs. editing, etc.

  • D.D.

Right, that I was aware of and I’ve used. Thanks.

Sorry to belabor the point again, but are you aware you can shift-click to select multiple instruments, and press P to hear just those? I regularly use that to audition groups. Easier than creating a separate layout.

Yes. I understand that your intent is to help, not belabor points. I really appreciate that.

For quick work, selection makes a lot of sense.

The more I experiment with using Layout groups as a means of shifting from one group of instruments to another the more I like it. In fact, I will be making a short Feature Request that might make modifying Layout groups on the fly less tedious.

Again, thanks dankreider.