Cues push back when an instrument change happens

There’s several posts on the topic of instrument changes, but I didn’t find a post dealing with the issue of cues and how they affect instrument change labels. So I guess my post is partly to ask a question/report an issue and partly to suggest a feature request.

The question/issue: is it expected and normal behaviour for cues to change where Dorico places an instrument change in the part? In my latest experience adding a cue moves the switch to after the cue which defeats the purpose of the cue, which is to prepare the player better for their entry. Here are a couple of pictures to show what I mean:

Instrument change without the cue (ignore the spacing, that’s not the point here).

Instrument change after adding the cue.

The feature request: to be able to have more control over where/when instrument changes happen. Even if the software did a better job of knowing where to place it you simply can’t go wrong with letting the user decide the exception that proves the rule.

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Update: I managed to fool Dorico into doing what I wanted by placing a note in the piccolo (ottavino) before the cues, adding the cues, and then going back and deleting that note.

I have a question to the experts that is related with this:

I cannot understand the logic that is behind the labeling of instrument changes in presence of a cue.
I made a short video to explain my question. It seems that the “instrument change” labeling randomly disappears and reappears on both ends (-where the “To…” appears and -where the new instruments starts playing) when dragging the start point of the cue. Can someone explain how Dorico manages it? Or there are some settings to personalize this behavior?
Thank you for any elucidation.

(Ideally the “To…” should be (and stay) just after the old instrument finishes playing and the name of the new instrument should always appear when it begins playing.)

I attach the example as Dorico file, and a link to the video.
To apply the cue on the “old” instrument doesn’t change the behavior…
instrument change labeling with cues.dorico (486.3 KB)
Instrument change labeling and cues-VIDEO

I may be wrong but I think this is handled by this Layout Option, isn’t it?

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Hi @pianoleo thank you for checking it ,
i have the option activated but in my example video you see that the labels appears and disappears depending on the dragging of the cue position points in a way that I don’t understand…

I haven’t had a chance to look at your project, I’m afraid. I was aiming to reply to Rodrigo’s original question.

Rodrigo’s issue really stems, I think, from the fact that Dorico switches to the new instrument immediately after the last note on the original instrument (or typically no later than the barline following the last note on the original instrument). As such, if you’re looking at the music in page view and you can already see the instrument change, when you create a cue in the gap between the last note of the original instrument and the first note of the new one, you’re actually creating the cue in the new instrument.

If you want the instrument change to occur after the cue, i.e. for the cue to be nominally in the original instrument, then you should switch to galley view and add the cue specifically on the original instrument’s staff.

I’m very behind on the forum and don’t have time right this minute to look at your project @Christian_R, but I’ve bookmarked this thread and will come back to it when I get a chance.

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That’s very interesting, Leo. I hadn’t seen that option before somehow. I’ll take a look and see what it does for me. Thanks, as always!

Ah! That’s some great insight there, @dspreadbury. I hadn’t thought of the possibility of inputting the cue specifically in Galley mode as you suggest. That surely will solve most problems. (Although I do think that adding some flexibility and options for the user as to when to place the instrument change would be great. There’s plenty of good reasons to do that. But again, you have a bigger picture of what that would entail and I don’t.) Thanks for taking the time from your busy schedule to reply to my concerns. As always, with deep gratitude.

IIRC That is under consideration for future implementation.

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For non-percussion staves, you can sorta do this now. Dorico only draws clefs and or key sigs at an instrument change if they are different from the previous instrument. If you make the clefs and key sigs match (using independent key sigs), then Dorico won’t draw them even though it “thinks” there has been a change. This does involve a bit of key sig math for transposing instruments though.

If I take a player with the very unlucky doubles of Flute, Alto Sax, and Tuba, normally it will look like this in Scroll View …

… and this in Page:

If I make sure the clefs and key sigs always match at the previous change like this …

… then I can get a correctly notated part like this:

The key sig math can get tricky though. I had to input an independent key sig of Bb in the Alto Sax in order for it to be display as G. Then I input a key sig of G at the actual entrance so it is correctly transposed as E. It’s convoluted and a pain but this is how I usually end up handling doubles.

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