General placement conventions for fingering

Fingerings are placed as close as possible to the notes to which they apply, so the performer can read them easily and clearly.

In music for grand staff instruments, such as the piano and harp, it is accepted to place fingerings for the right hand above the top staff, and fingerings for the left hand below the bottom staff. However, in dense contrapuntal music for these instruments, fingerings can be placed between the staves to follow the direction of the voices to which they apply.

Different conventions apply to fingerings for fretted instruments, as they require fingerings for both the right and left hands.

Right-hand fingering placement

By default, all right-hand fingerings are placed outside the staff and on the notehead side of notes, which can be above or below the staff depending on the stem direction. When shown beside notes inside the staff, Dorico Pro automatically joins adjacent notes with the same right-hand fingering with a bracket.

Left-hand fingering placement

Left-hand fingerings are usually positioned inside the staff and to the left of the notes to which they apply. However, they also must not collide with other items, such as accidentals and rhythm dots. Dorico Pro automatically calculates the most appropriate positions for left-hand fingerings and erases their backgrounds by default, which improves their readability when placed on staff lines.