Unable to change layout in Dorico

I recently cross-graded from Sibelius (the latest version) to Dorico as recommended by friends. However, I have been really struggling to produce what is a very simple set of tasks in Sibelius.

My aim is to start with one instrument (a cantor), then have a system break (not a line break), then on the same system have an SATB response with 4 instruments, much like the image I have pasted below. I’ve managed to do this in Sibelius but as yet not managed to work out how to do this in Dorico. I really enjoy all of the keyboard shortcuts which make it quicker to use, however, I am really struggling to customise the layout as someone who uses advanced layouts a lot in Sibelius, especially when I cannot hide instruments from a full score - this is becoming extremely frustrating and sadly makes the program unusable until I find a solution.

The other problem I am having is creating lyrics below held notes (again like in the image attached) and I am not getting enough space between the notes (when I have multiple words via alt+shift+space). In Sibelius, you just simply drag the notes further apart and its done, but I cannot seem to do this in Dorico, again for the time being making the program unusable.

This is absolutely achievable with Dorico’s powerful Engrave mode. You need to make separate music frames for all the sections. Here is a quick mock up I did:
Skjermbilde 2017-06-07 kl. 23.53.16.png
You need to go to the ‘Vertical spacing’ section of ‘Layout options’ (accessible from setup mode) , and enable “Hide empty staves: All systems”. Make sure the proper layout is selected in the left hand panel. When this setting is activated, I advice you to write in Galley view.

I wrote the ‘Priest’ as a separate player. This is how it looks like in write mode:
Skjermbilde 2017-06-07 kl. 23.53.24.png
It is easier to operate the music frames if you make the frame breaks first. Make sure to set all the frame chains to ‘MA’ (upper left corner of each frame).

To learn more about frames, have a look at this:

Regarding the lyrics - one way to achieve this is to first enter some sixteen notes, enter the lyrics, and then change the notes to a whole note. This looks like a mess in galley view, but should be fine in Page view. If you need more space, you can add a ‘Note spacing change’ from the Engrave menu. I think this will be easier in the upcoming update.

I didn’t know about the ‘Shift+alt+space’ way to make multiple words on the same note. This is probably easier. As said, you can add more space with ‘Note spacing change’. Make sure to make a “spacing reset” in the next bar. You can adjust the lyric alignment in the properties panel.

Dear Anders,
the keystrokes for hard space is shift+alt+space (at least on my french mac…)
Hope it helps !

You’re absolutely right!

Anders, your tutorial is AMAZING. THANK YOU. Thanks for showing the galley view too. I’m not the OP but boy is this helpful to remember for the future. I’m a church musician and this will very likely serve me in the near future.

Just to confirm that I have recently worked on a set of Preces and Responses in Dorico following basically Anders’s method. When I have time, I will prepare a complete edition of a set of responses that is out of copyright and share it here as an example.

Please do: that would be very helpful for a Dorico project I have half finished.

I’ve just posted a pretty detailed tutorial for how to set up a Preces and Responses score in Dorico on the Making Notes blog.

This is not my kind of music, but what a tutorial!

I know that you are very busy, Daniel, but more like this for other kinds of music, please.

I’m happy to take requests for the sorts of things you would like to see.

Two years later, this tutorial still seems to me the most useful ever made available for Dorico. Working through it step by step (even though I’m unlikely to have a use for the finished project) taught me more about how to work with the software (Frames especially) than any other single resource. If Daniel can’t do more, perhaps other could contribute something equally detailed: a short string quartet movement, a jazz ensemble chart, many sorts of music could teach us how to use the program better.