In this paper we describe an orthogonal similarity transformation for transforming arbitrary symmetric matrices into a diagonal-plus-semiseparable matrix, where we can freely choose the diagonal. Very recently an algorithm was proposed for transforming arbitrary symmetric matrices into similar semiseparable ones. This reduction is strongly connected to the reduction to tridiagonal form. The class of semiseparable matrices can be considered as a subclass of the diagonalplus- semiseparable matrices. Therefore we can interpret the proposed algorithm here as an extension of the reduction to semiseparable form.