Hairpin shows in score but not in part

Sometimes hairpins are shown in the full score, but are missing from the individual parts. In this case, the forte dynamic is attached to the first beat of the bar after the half note. While I understand that Dorico might think there’s too little space to draw the hairpin, hiding it completely is not ideal. At least a warning would be helpful to indicate something is hidden, allowing for adjustments.

If I move the forte dynamic to the last eighth note of the bar, the hairpin does appear.

I’ve found other reports of this issue and some workarounds, but only for Dorico Pro.

I used Dorico SE for a while and really enjoyed it. Now using Dorico Elements, I’m strongly considering Pro for the future. However, this hairpin behavior needs fixing, as it’s a fairly common musical situation.

I am attaching a picture of the score with hairpin shown, a picture of the part where the hairpin is missing and the dorico project file.

hairpin issue.dorico (512,7 KB)

This is normally due to not enough horizontal space. Try putting a System Break somewhere and see what happens.

Daniel’s latest response about this problem was here last year. I searched for “hairpin disappears” and found several more threads, including a similar issue just 12 days ago.

Hi Daniel,

Thanks for your response. You’re right, it does work.

Also, if I move any of the dynamics to the left, the hairpin does appear in the part. However, I’d like the developers to address this in a systematic way. The example I posted was just to illustrate the point, but this happened in a larger orchestral work I’m working on, and it took me several manual revisions of each part to catch there was something wrong.

Hi Mark, thanks for your response.

Yes, I also found older threads about this. In addition to my experience, this is my way to press for the developers to address this in a systematic way. This is by no means an obscure feature request, but rather a solution for a pretty common musical situation. The fact that this has been a known issue for a year makes it even worse.

Even a small warning flag would be very helpful for users to know when a hairpin isn’t being drawn. The example I posted was just to illustrate the point, but this happened in a larger orchestral work I’m working on, and it took me several manual revisions of each part to catch there was something wrong.

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… I’m thinking a red dot or square or something would work well. This bit me a few times as well.

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Thanks for bringing this variation of the problem to our attention. Dorico has a mechanism that enforces the Minimum length for hairpins value (from the Dynamics page of Engraving Options), but this is a particular situation in which it’s not operable.

In this example project, the forte dynamic is attached to the start of the multi-bar rest, and Dorico draws it at the end of the previous bar instead of omitting it, as is correct. However, the information about the width of the dynamic, which belongs to the rhythmic position where the multi-bar rest begins, is not being used when the minimum width of the hairpin is being applied, because of the way the rhythmic spacing works. In the fullness of time, we would like to improve this aspect of Dorico’s rhythmic spacing, but it’s not a simple thing to add.

Long ago, before the first version of Dorico was released, we made the judgement call that we should suppress the drawing of hairpins that are shorter than the minimum length, because they typically look poor. However, I think over time we have come to regard that as a bad call: even if Dorico cannot in 100% of situations ensure that the hairpin has sufficient space, the eye will be drawn more to a poor-looking hairpin than to the absence of a hairpin. We should show the hairpin in every circumstance, as a quick proof-reading pass over the page will reveal the problem more readily than trying to determine whether a hairpin is missing.

So in the near term, we can change this behaviour such that too-short hairpins will be drawn, rather than hidden, and in the longer term, we will try to resolve the issue that prevents the width of the dynamic at the end of the hairpin being taken into account when that dynamic coincides with the start of a multi-bar rest.


Hi! I sincerely appreciate the time you took to address this thread in such a detailed professional way.

I understand that changing seemingly simple behaviors for non-technical users might be very complicated because of software architecture. So, I really appreciate that this issue and its variations are being considered.

I have used Finale, Sibelius, and Musecore, and recently tried Dorico SE. I found right away that it is a superior tool. I switched to Dorico Elements for now and am seriously considering Pro for the future. Thanks again for your reply!