Let’s look at a few of the engraving innovations in Dorico.
To start things off, here are a few appetizers, presented without much comment.
Octave lines can be angled to follow the material’s contour:
Tremolo strokes will automatically stay out of leger lines:
Cross-stave tuplet brackets are drawn with correct hooks:
Dense chromatic clusters can be displayed with split stems:
Glissando lines between notes of the same diatonic pitch slant:
For better or worse, tuplets can cross bar lines easily:
You can even (with a little effort afterwards) re-create the multi-segment slur in Ravel’s Le Tombeau de Couperin:
Challenging avant-garde scores
Assuming that you are appropriately dazzled, now here is an example that shows the power of Dorico’s Engrave mode — in particular, the concept of music frames in connection with flows.
Leonard Bernstein, at the beginning of his Mass, writes four mini-cantatas to be played (from tape) simultaneously, but completely independently. The score of the section, which merely acts as a rough guide for minimal synchronization, was virtually impossible to create without highly specialized tools and knowledge.
Guess what: I did it within a few hours in Dorico, with most of the time spent on note entry (click for the PDF).
Keep in mind that this is a proof-of-concept to illustrate this point; many details from the source score have been left out and it’s not suited for proper publication.
So, what is happening here?
The four separate pieces are four separate flows. With these put in, all I had to do was to draw independent music frames in Engrave mode at the appropriate positions on each page, and then override the default “frame chain”; which simply means that I tell Dorico exactly which flows I want to have “flowing” through which of my custom frames.
Perhaps it is better illustrated in this schematic (click to enlarge).
Next up is a short excerpt from Ligeti’s Nouvelles Aventures. Again, it’s a proof-of-concept with details left out but also, this is a bit mean; in Dorico 1.0 the functionality demonstrated here is not entirely available.
Note how all notes between the various players are connected with a single beam. In the publicly released build this is only possible between multiple instruments belonging to a particular player (and within any multi-staff instrument, of course). I include it here to show that Dorico is actually much more powerful than it might appear at first; there are some phenomenal things waiting to be unleashed once they are completely ready.
And since I know that there are people out there who won’t take a scorewriter serious unless it passes the Ferneyhough test; here you go (click for the entire PDF):
Disclaimer: the above excerpt from Ferneyhough’s Opus Contra Naturam was provided by Steinberg in form of a MusicXML file. The statements of previous disclaimers apply, but it should be added that all I did to make the XML import presentable was to set a page size, to introduce breaks, to move a small number of rests and to fine-tune the right-hand offset of a comparably small number of tuplet brackets to cater to my personal taste. I spent about ten to fifteen minutes on this, from XML import to PDF export.