What can/can’t one do with text in Elements 2, absent the full blown Engraving Mode and Text Flows of Big Dorico?
Project Info dialog allows the full range of Dorico score annotations to be entered, but only a subset of those are displayed: title (but not subtitle or dedication); lyricist, composer, copyright. The big issue here is it seems you do not get to choose the typeface. The displayed text items cannot be selected in Write Mode by mouse click. Multi-line text does not appear possible. Thus the common convention of printing songbooks with at right “Words and Music by” and the writer(s) underneath is frustrated.
Lyrics, including multi-line lyrics, between staves are perfectly feasible, with optional verse numbering, etc. The Bottom Panel is functional for properties - and there one finds a pleasant surprise: custom font size scaling (and color, if you like that)! A drawback is that selecting lyrics for adjusting the scaling can only be done, it seems, on a per-line basis by a mouse marquee – a tolerable workflow, IMO (unless you have to set Milton to music ). But you don’t get to choose the typeface of lyrics.
Staff text and system text is possible (Shift+X, Alt+Shift+X). The good news here is that one has a full set of typeface and font and alignment options, including the possibility of multi-line text, and different attributes for individual characters in that text. This makes it conceivable to try to fudge something similar to the songsheet convention mentioned above, and (with more desperation) a multi-line copyright notice at page bottom. However, these text items are anchored to a note or rest, so reformating the score may throw the positioning awry.
Staff and system texts can be repositioned to some extent by selecting and using Alt+Left/Right Arrow keys. The extent of movement is limited to the horizontal in Elements 2 – vertical adjustment does not seem possible. You also cannot relocate horizontally further to the left on a staff than the leftmost extent of whatever content is in the first bar in the system – text is either moved to the previous staff, or stuck over the first note in the first system. Because multiple staff/system texts can be anchored at the same point in the score with collision avoidance to prevent overlaps, there maybe some possibility in tricksing things. YMMV.
I may have overlooked some text features, or got the above wrong in some way(s), as I’ve been playing with Elements 2 for only a couple of days. Please correct as necessary.
In brief, tho, Elements 2 does not quite yet meet both an intended audience of songwriters and the claim of “publication quality music” (https://www.dorico.com/compare-editions/), if the latter is interpreted broadly to include published songbooks and music rather than merely the staves and dots therein. OTOH, as noted, there are many cases where delivery of a score to the general public is not required, including my own requirement for a musical notepad with polymeter support, so the constraints I find on text are in no way paramount.
Two questions, then:
Have I overlooked any important and useful text facility in Elements 2?
Do Dorico devs have any plans to de-restrict some of the constraints on the text facilities in Elements 2? For example, to include something like a much simplified version of page-based text frames of Big Dorico.