Tied notes in violin from a normal note to harmonic?

I can’t for the life of me figure out how to tie a normal note to an artificial harmonic. So if a violinist is holding a note under one bow and touches a 4th up for a harmonic how do I do this in Dorico 5?

I think technically they are different notes, so a tie makes no logical sense. Perhaps your best option is to use a slur and adjust its position in Engrave.


Try putting the two in separate voices and then removing the rests.

Slice 1


This seems like a solution, but it’s silly it has to be so cumbersome.

No logical sense? This is done in countless modern scores.

I considered that option, but it messes up the playback.

Janus, you have piqued my curiosity; you mean one does not hear the harmonic? Yes, that would make using a slur a better option, and it didn’t feel silly or cumbersome at all.

In Dorico a tied note really is a single note, and not two notes tied together.

If you are not concerned by playback. Create the harmonic as a chord. Tie the lower note and change the notehead of the upper note.

1 Like

Wouldn’t it be easier (and make more semantic sense) to just fake a tie with a slur?

That was Janus’s original suggestion. Scartabello dismissed it as silly.

1 Like

Somehow applying a non-expressive tie from a note to a different note makes any sense at all…
Something being done in “countless modern scores” doesn’t make it more valid nor sound.
But the most important of all, what is even the desired effect?

The desired effect is having the string player hold a note under one bow motion and touch the node to produce a harmonic without a bow change. You can see this used a lot in scores by Saariaho, Grisey and Murail for example. This is the effect I’m going for. I didn’t dismiss using a slur I just found it odd that this would be illogical if the compositional effect I’m going for. I’m a professional composer and not a hobbyist btw. I’ve been trying out Dorico because of the exciting microtonal capabilities, but I’m a little disappointed about this little hiccup. Something like this is easy enough to do in Finale and Sibelius.

Ok this sounds like a plan, how do I change the note heads of a chord, I’m new to Dorico thanks!

Is there no way to have this work visually and also work in playback?

Select the notehead. right-click>Notehead> Diamonds>White Diamond Notehead

(BTW I have no issue with the effect you want to notate. It’s just that it’s not easy for Dorico to permit if you want both the notation and the playback)


Thank you, I think the visual is most important when I deliver to players, so I guess the playback can be sacrificed. Just too bad something like this wouldn’t work for playback but I get that. A lot of more modern techniques aren’t able to be realized by notation software and even virtual instruments for that matter. I am psyched about the microtonal playback and notation in Dorico though. Thanks Janus!

Can use a player for the notation, and another player for the playback (staff visibility hidden) for these issues.

There are workarounds, but they are definitely cumbersome!

Seems to me the slur solution is relatively straightforward and encompasses both notation and playback.


I’ll try that thanks. Couldn’t figure out how to move the slurs tho. I’m new to Dorico, just started demo’ing it.