Arpeggio signs

Arpeggio signs are vertical lines that indicate chords are to be played arpeggiated, or “spread”, so that the notes in the chord are played very quickly one after another. Arpeggio signs are normally shown as vertical wavy lines.

Arpeggiated chords can be played in two directions:

  • Upwards, starting from the bottom note in the chord.

  • Downwards, starting from the top note in the chord.

It is most common for up arpeggio signs to have nothing at the top end, because chords are usually arpeggiated upwards, and for down arpeggio signs to have an arrow at the bottom, so these are the defaults in Dorico Pro. However, it is also accepted practice to show up arpeggio signs with an arrow at the top if down arpeggio signs are also used in the same piece of music.

Arpeggio signs in Dorico Pro automatically span the range of all notes in the voices/staves to which they apply.