Transposing Selections with Key signatures included

I never saw that option at all. Perhaps, manually entering the Key of C in the popover made it appear, but the stave already showed C Major in a red box.

Nope. System breaks don’t or shouldn’t affect anything to do with key signatures. Unless I am missing something (not unlikely).

So, does each group of 4 measures have to be a separate flow or player, then, if each is a different key signature?

I’ll post this as a new question, which it is.

Nope. Not at all. You can have key signatures wherever you like but putting a system break in the middle doesn’t affect them at all.

Okay. Thanks, Daniel.

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Tha same thing is happening again. I started over. Used Shift-K to set the first system to Key of C. Copied and pasted the 4 bars. Selected the 4 bars in the second system and when I open Transpose, Transpose Key Signature is dimmed out. I haven’t changed any other settings. It worked that one time for me and I have no idea why it’s not working now. I’m going to show my screens to Daniel and report it as a possible bug.

You’ll notice in your selection that there is no key signature selected. This means you won’t have the option to transpose the key signature.

If you use the System Track to select the first four bars before copying, you will notice that the signpost will also be copied and will appear in bar 5.

Currently you are purely selecting the notes.

Thank you! Yes, I see the difference right away when I paste the 4 bars. Now they show C Major over them. Transpose is now working and now the second 4 bars have the 1 flat key signature for the Key of F. Fantastic! TYVM, Daniel. :grinning:


Now just use the System Track to select those 8 bars and then repeat!

If my maths is correct you’ll only have to do it thrice?

I went back to the manual, and your tip is not in the Transpose instructions anywhere. I’m going to suggest they modify the text to specify to select the System Track if you want to Transpose Key Signature. You’re getting the credit for this suggestion, too, not me. I’m just passing it on.

From the manual:


  1. Optional: In Write mode, make a selection in the music area.


  • If you want to transpose key signatures, you must include them in your selection.

I will say, per your recommended solution, “…you must include the System Track in your selection.”

You don’t necessarily have to use the System Track - it is just the easiest way to select all material in a bar.

You could do what you originally did and then simply copy/paste the C major signpost to bar 5 and the same result will happen.

The important thing is the signpost. It needs to be included in the selection that you want to transpose if you want to have the option to transpose the key signature too.

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But you’re 100% correct when it comes to Transposing Key Signature. I just sent a message to Daniel @dspreadbury pointing out the distinction you taught me. What a time saver if the manual had only been more specific.
I’m sure Daniel will see this message and your add’l suggestion to include the signpost. Thanks for all your help, Daniel!

Hello @Johne1 , I’m the person responsible for writing the Dorico manual.

As Dan has said above, the important thing is that the key signature, or its signpost for invisible key signatures like C major and A minor, is explicitly selected prior to you opening the Transpose dialog.

You can select key signatures/signposts in all kinds of ways – there is already a link to “selecting/deselecting items individually” at the end of the page about transposing using the dialog, but I can add a link also to the system track and other selection methods

(Edit: because I am so easily persuaded, I’ve just expanded the summary of the system track on this page and its own reference to include an explicit mention of system objects with named examples incl key signatures, which I agree should be more helpful going forwards).

If the manual described even just a few possible selection methods on every page that involved going on to do something with the stuff you’ve selected (which is quite a lot of the time!) it would be a very repetitive and even-more-enormous reference, with the information unique to other pages (like changing the line type of glissandos) hidden beneath the selection information.

Therefore, we segment information: instructions for how to select items in all kinds of ways and the various consequences are described once (at least), and you can always refer back to that. Other pages might link to those instructions, but otherwise won’t repeat that information.


Nope. Inserting manual breaks gives you the hand over casting off. Inputting key signatures is something else.
What you can do now with 5.1 that you couldn’t do before is hiding customary key signatures, so you don’t need to use the ol’ trick involving fake codas (in case you’ve been reading the forum. We’ve been doing that for years…)

Hi @Lillie_Harris ,

I understand your dilemma. Not an easy job, for sure. After first reading your reply, I went back and visited the links you left and some of their links. Not finding there what I knew was needed for someone with the problem I encountered, I used the Manual’s Search textbox and was handed 1500+ results. I visited all the results on the first page of results and none were specific to my issue.

I’m sure the changes you made will make the documentation more helpful.

Thank you for “being persuaded’! :sunglasses:


Thanks, @MarcLarcher Marc, for correcting me and all the additional info you provided.

I really appreciate all your help.


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The only issue I encountered was when going from Gb to B. It wanted to transpose it to 7 flats. So, I deleted it and put the 5 sharp key signature in with Shift - K. When I transposed the notes from Gb to B a second time, it then used flats and seemed to ignore my key signature. To resolve that, I copied and pasted just the notes and transposed to B without Transpose Key Signature (it was dimmed anyway). That worked.

@dspreadbury However, the first time I tried that, Dorico blew off my screen when I clicked OK in the Transpose screen and lost all the blank bars I had added with Shift - B. I had 60 bars in the score until that happened, then I was left with 33 bars. Bar 33 I had added with the + sign on the last system track. Only the bars added with Shift - B were gone and I was sitting back at the iPad’s Desktop with Dorico completely gone.

See, G♭ to B is not a perfect fourth, it’s an augmented 3rd. The little interval calculator on the right side of the Transpose dialog will figure it out for you. With the correct interval, you can transpose the key sig – if you select it – along with the notes.

Just changing the key sig does not alter the following notes (as it does in Finale), not even enharmonically.


Without knowing the context, you could see it as an augmented 3rd, but when you’re cycling through all 12 keys in 4ths, it goes:

C - F - Bb - Eb - Ab - Db - Gb (AKA F#) - B
I decided to use F# instead of Gb and continue cycling in 4ths using the sharp keys to get back to C.

Ah, I see what you’re saying. I should have used the right-side in the Transpose window and manually input the key changes I wanted.

Seems obvious now. Thanks, Mark!