Extra staff question in Dorico 3.5

Hi all -

I’ve dug through the forums here and just want to confirm my suspicion on something.

I’d like to be able to insert a single-line staff in between the staves of a Harp part, like this screenshot.
Screen Shot 2021-02-13 at 12.04.08 PM

I think I am seeing that this is not possible? Does anyone have any thoughts about how to execute this within Dorico? My option will likely be 1) create a single-line staff to notate the rhythms, 2) take the score into Illustrator and simply flip the order of the staves and reconnect the barlines where necessary. But I’d be interested to hear if anyone has any other thoughts or suggestions!

Thank you in advance!

You could make the treble and bass staves into separate instruments with an unpitched percussion instrument in between them, all given to the same player. The bracketing and staff labels would need manual adjusting in that case.
Alternatively, cue the rhythm in the bass stave with the “Rhythmic cue” property on—you wouldn’t get the line but at least it keeps together as one instrument. Also, the layout would need to show all cues.
You could even hack it graphically within Dorico without needing Illustrator by moving the “percussion” stave in between the harp staves with Manual Staff Spacing, like so:

(Without the extra instrument, Dorico will not continue the systemic barline downwards past the percussion stave)


Great ideas! I’ll see which seems to make the most sense in the context of what I’m orchestrating. Thanks for the reply :slight_smile:

I had the same thought as Hugo, and it does look fine.
You can get the bracket working ok, rename the instrument in the middle as Harp etc.
Galley view:

Page View:

Glissandi won’t play back, and Pedal Changes will probably need careful consideration, duplication and manual editing (because they’ll only consider one of the two staves automatically). The bigger problems seem to be that cross-staffing is glitchy (it seems to work from the top staff down to the bottom staff, but not from the bottom staff to the top staff), and that (I think) you can only get this amount of control with Manual Staff Visibllity if Instrument Changes are disallowed, because otherwise Dorico will constantly be trying to switch from “Harp 1” to “Snare” to “Harp 2” and back again.


Super helpful to see both views. That makes a lot of sense. I think this is likely the most sensible solution for this at the moment, because the rhythmic layer is only occurring for 100 bars or so.

Thanks so much for giving this some thought for me!

Am I correct in guessing that this configuration only needs to appear in the part, or does this staff overlap need to appear in the full (conductor) score as well. If it only has to show in the part, then does the centered staff need to be active in the score layout, which should help the harp function more naturally?

Just guessing and wondering here.