Different barline behaviour on a multi-stave piano part

Hey there!
In the last measures of Stravinsky’s The Firebird transcription for piano, there are some dashed barlines that don’t extend themselves through the whole system—only the upper two staves.
Is this behavior possible to recreate in Dorico?


You can certainly cheat it:

  1. Go to Engraving Options > Barlines and scroll down to Barline Joins. Set “Coincident Barlines in Polymetric Music” to “Join”.
  2. Use Shift-T to enter extra time signatures, but use Alt-Enter rather than Enter to apply them only to the stave currently selected. Then select each extra time signature and alt-click it from the top stave to the middle stave (or vice-versa). [I forgot to drop the middle stave by an octave. Ignore it!] Thus far it should look like this:

  1. Select all, then Edit>Filter>Time Signatures. Go to the bottom panel and flick the “Hide time signature switch”.
  2. Open the Bars and Barlines section of the right panel. Select the dashed barline and alt-click it onto each barline you want dashed, in each of the top and middle staves. They should join up automatically.

End result:

You’ll likely have to add some bar number changes manually, which can be done by selecting any note, right clicking, going to Bar Numbers > Add Bar Number Change.

Addendum: I realise now that some of the dashed barlines do go all the way through all three staves. You can probably work out how to modify my instructions to make this possible, but the rests in the bottom staff will likely then be centred in the “bar” (by which I mean the last segment of the bar) and I’m not sure whether the Note Spacing tool in Engrave Mode will allow you to shift those over. You can certainly use Force Duration (o) to create rests that show the correct number of bests, rather than showing a bar (semibreve/whole note) rest.

I think you can use local aggregate time signatures of 2+4 | 2+4 | 3+4 to achieve this result, which will add the dashed barlines automatically.

Wow, thank you so much for your help! Pianoleo, I’m impressed by your work!
Daniel, I didn’t know this automatic addition of dashed barlines on aggregate time signatures! It’s fantastic! :smiley:
However, pianoleo’s workaround seems to get closer to the printed edition, as these barlines can join two—or all—staves.


I find this delightfully fascinating. I’ve never seen piano music written this way but it really makes me want to apply it to my compositions.