Examples showing original vs. ornamented music

I have been engraving some musical examples for an author working on a book on traditions of musical ornamentation, to see if Dorico will serve his needs and replace the examples which he has so far written by hand. They reproduce the examples created by composers and performers in the 18th and 19th centuries, and it is therefore desirable that the notation match the original in all details, including oddities of beaming and such matters. In general Dorico has handled this beautifully, but a few challenges of presentation have arisen. (Under the circumstances, it would not be right for me to share the examples here, so I’ll do my best to describe them.) They have to do with the ends of examples, at the right margin, as most examples end on a downbeat, with a partial measure of one or two beats.

  1. I need to hide the barline that would otherwise appear at the end of the system. When this is also the end of the flow, it’s no problem – I can set that as a default. But if I have two such incomplete systems in a flow (two parallel examples), to contrast what happens on first appearance with the greater amount of ornamentation for the da capo, then it gets tricky. “Deleting” the barline at the end of System 1 also remove all meter information that comes after it. I have been able to make it work, but it feels precarious (I was fortunate that the second staff started with a pickup), and I wonder if I have missed a more obvious way.

  2. Often the melodic line ends (in that incomplete last measure) with an eighth note. As it was originally part of a beamed group, it is desired to show it with a beam (extending toward the right margin) rather than a flag. Is there any way to achieve that?

  3. After that final note, is there any neutral symbol that can follow it to indicate “the original music continues”? The writer of the manuscript uses a pair of short wavy lines on the two middle staff spaces, like two tildes stacked one above the other. Can something like that be done?

This is the danger of any tool that produces such lovely results as Dorico – it does so much so well, we want it to do more! Thanks to anyone who can help.

For #2, one way would be to add a system break immediately after the first beamed note. It would split the beam at the end of that system. I think there are other ways, but I don’t know that they’re very easy. And then you have the problem of what to do with the leftover bit.

#3 is quite easy. You will want to create a custom playing technique. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3p-hXO8wb4

You have full access to all the glyphs in Bravura, you just need to dig through the menus, as they’re not always grouped in an obvious way.

In this case, I actually just used the tilde. I added it twice in the glyph editor, and positioned the second one beneath the first. Then I assigned the popover text “cont.” to use it.

custom shape.png

For #1, I was able to hide the final barline of a system, but the problem comes when you add an explicit meter indication at the start of the next system… you get a cautionary. I wonder if you might not simply want to start a new flow at that point. That gives you the control you want over the final barline without worrying about cautionaries.

Here’s that split beam for #2. It looks ok I guess… Just not sure how to deal with what comes after it. And its appearance (length, distance from right margin) cannot be modified.

If you made each example into a different flow, it wouldn’t be so hard. You could define the boundary of the music frame (it would become a frame break, not a system break), and the remaining bit you could dump off to some unused future page perhaps. Inelegant, admittedly.

Here’s a pertinent thread, with an offer for a workaround.

partial beam.png

Am I right in thinking you are just creating the music examples in Dorico, and not the whole book?

If so, you could solve some of the problems by cropping the graphics after you export them, to clip off final bar lines etc.

For the “continuation” symbol, you could consider the “custos” which was used for exactly that purpose up to the baroque period. See https://www.smufl.org/version/latest/range/medievalAndRenaissanceMiscellany/

For the partial beam, if it looks a bit ugly to have the beam ending right at the end of the staff lines, you can hide the note stem in the Engrave Mode properties, and it is very easy to create a “headless” note head type.

Then you can produce something like this, by tweaking the note spacing to move the headless, stemless note to the left and shorten the beam …

dankreider, your helpfulness is awe-inspiring (as is your ubiquity). You too, Rob Tuley.

On #1, I had indeed considered putting the second part into a new flow, and that may well be the way to go in the end. In general I’m a big believer in “each example, even if there are hundreds, gets its own flow,” but I had been swayed by the appeal of having the few cases in which there are similar pairs, to be read in parallel, combined in one flow (and also not upsetting the overall numbering). But it may be better for me to let go of that and handle it in a more stable way.

For #2, Mr. Tuley’s idea of hiding a stem with a headless note seems promising, and I would indeed not want the beam to go all the way to the end of the staff, as I want that little “continuation” symbol to follow it.

Which brings me to #3, for which I thank you both for good ideas. The double-tilde idea makes me very happy, and I’ll get to work on trying it out.

[Apologies for late reply, and for any typos here. I’m two days past cataract surgery, and while the results are generally wonderful, during the two weeks until I can be approved for a new prescription for my improved state, I have to make do with cheap store-bought reading glasses, which are necessarily approximate for me, and I have to stop after brief stints.]

Rinaldo, you might find this workaround helpful for hiding “final” barlines, courtesy of Craig F.

That’s splendid, dankreider. Thanks again.

A point that’s unrelated, except that it keeps coming up in these same historical examples: They use only un-slashed grace notes. As far as I can tell, the default remains slashed always – there’s no way to set it otherwise? (Alternative, there’s no way to enter everything, then Select all grace notes and change them to unlashed?) I’ve been changing them one at a time, or sometimes selecting a group.

You can filter-select them all, I believe, and change them in the Properties panel.

Several people have expressed the desire for the option to make them unslashed.

The default might be slashed, but within note entry mode, Alt+/ acts as a toggle. Type it at the start of note entry, watch the slash disappear from the panel and then type unslashed grace notes. Dorico respects it at least until you exit note entry mode.

The frustrating thing is that the icon in the left panel remains showing “unslashed” until you go back into note entry mode.

I don’t really care which mode it starts in when you open a project, but it would be nice if starting note entry DIDN’T reset it every time.

We agree, and this is on our backlog, but it hasn’t managed to fight its way to the top of the priority list just yet.