As I’ve been using Dorico, I’ve been daydreaming a bit about its potential implementation of chords, and what it might do better than its counterparts. Two key ideas I’d love to see:
1. Make Chords a Separate Player. Add Chords as a special type of player, accessible not on a staff but on a rhythmic grid or field which can be positioned above or below (for figured bass) any other instrument. This method offers several advantages:
a. The flexibility to use your chord progressions in multiple parts without cutting/pasting or hiding. There are several publishers of liturgical music, for example, that place guitar chords over the keyboard staves in their octavos, but then would provide a separate “guitar/vocal” edition or page in that octavo with chords over the melody. Simply being able to include the Chords player in one’s part scores makes this kind of implementation easy and consistent.
b. Chords as a separate player means that you can easily assign playback of said chords to another instrument consistently.
2. The Chords Popover.
a. It seems the currently vacant “Shift-R” would be the most quasi-mnemonic option for a shortcut.
b.When invoked, entering plain text like “E/G#” should result in the sharp.
c. Being able to follow a named chord with an alteration, e.g., “G” then “/B,” and having it spell out the proper chord for you (“G,” “G/B”) would be a big timesaver.
d. Being able to enter by scale degrees and roman numerals would be amazing.
Examples in GM:
“1/3” = “G/B”
“I” “IV” “V7” “I” = “G” “C” D7" “G”
e. You could make me, and certainly most Finale users, weep with joy by adding capo chord triggers. I’d LOVE to be able to select chords and add “capo 3” in the Popover to produce capo chords in my scores! Sibelius does this fairly well through a plug-in, but Finale is awful in this regard. Dorico could ROCK this.
f. Figured bass entry would be very helpful too. Perhaps the key here is to use, say, brackets to prompt a figure, e.g. “[6-4]”
g. I suppose capo chords and figured bass might be invoked via the Properties panel too…