Manually condensing players

You can manually change the allocation of players to voices and staves in each condensing group from selected rhythmic positions onwards in individual layouts.


We recommend only condensing players manually if changing the per-flow default condensing options, creating custom condensing groups, starting new phrases from selected rhythmic positions, and overriding selected condensing options has not produced the required condensing result.

In such cases, we recommend being careful and deliberate about your manual condensing choices. Dorico Pro follows your manual condensing settings exactly, even if they produce ambiguous results. For example, if you assign two players with very different rhythms to the same voice on the same staff, the resulting notation requires many tied notes and is harder to read than if they were in separate voices.


Graphic Editing is selected in the Engrave toolbox.


  1. In the music area, open the layout in which you want to condense players manually.
  2. In Engrave mode, select an item at the rhythmic position from which you want to change condensing manually.

    The item does not have to be on a condensed staff. Only a single condensing change can exist at a rhythmic position but you can change or reset options for multiple staves.

  3. Choose Engrave > Condensing Change to open the Condensing Change dialog.
  4. In the condensing groups list, activate the checkbox for each condensing group you want to include in the condensing change.

    Including condensing groups starts new phrases from the selected rhythmic position.

  5. Select a condensing group whose condensing you want to change manually.

    You can only change or reset options for a single selected condensing group at a time.

  6. In the Manual Condensing section, activate Condensing Approach.
  7. Choose Manual Condensing.
  8. Select a player in the players list.
  9. Assign the player to a voice and staff in any of the following ways:
    • Click and drag it across to the list on the right.

    • Click Add to Voice.

    By default, the first player is assigned to the up-stem voice on the first staff.

  10. Optional: If you want to assign the next player to a different staff, click Add Staff in the action bar at the bottom of the list on the right.

    By default, the top player in the players list is automatically assigned to the up-stem voice on the new staff.

  11. Optional: Continue assigning players to voices/staves in any of the following ways:
    • Click and drag them across to the required voice and staff in the list on the right.

      An insertion line indicates where the player will be assigned.

    • Select the player in the players list, select the destination voice and staff in the list on the right, and click Add to Voice.

    • You must assign all players in the condensing group to voices/staves before Dorico Pro allows you to confirm and close the dialog. Until all players are assigned, a warning icon appears beside the condensing group in the condensing group list.

    • You must always have at least one player assigned to the up-stem voice on a staff, you cannot only have players in the down-stem voice.

    • You cannot condense solo staves in divisi changes.

  12. Optional: Repeat steps 5 to 11 for each condensing group you want to condense manually from the selected rhythmic position.
  13. Click OK to save your changes and close the dialog.


The condensing result is changed in the current layout from the selected rhythmic position onwards. Dorico Pro recalculates the condensing result both before and after the condensing change for each condensing group whose checkbox you activated, as this treats the rhythmic position of the condensing change as the start of a new phrase.

The condensing groups whose manual condensing you changed follow your assignments until the next condensing change that changes or resets those assignments, if one exists, or the end of the flow, whichever comes first. For divisi changes, the condensing result reverts to the default in the layout if the number of divisions subsequently changes.

A signpost is shown at the position of the condensing change.