Inserting bars rest

I have a stave with two voices in it. The first voice begins in bar 6, and the second in bar 10. Bars 1 - 5 have whole bar rests in them coloured the same as the first (tails up) voice. I select the bar rest in bar 1 and hit return. Then I change the cursor to voice 2 (tails down) and click on “Insert bar rest”.

All the rests of bars 1 - 5 change to the colour of the second voice. No additional bars rest are created.

I select the first bar rest again, and change the cursor to voice 1 (tails up). When I click on “Insert bar rest”, rests are created in bars 1 - 5 in the first voice.

I now have a bar rest for each voice in bars 1-5, which is what I what want.

But why does it take me so many steps? Am I doing something wrong?



What’s your setting in Write > Notation Options > Rests > Bar rests in additional voices ? If it’s set to Omit bar rests, then you’ll be fighting against Dorico’s expectations.

It is set to Show bar rests.


In that case, it might be a lower option on that page relating to consolidating rests of the same duration in multiple voices that might be the badger: Rest Positioning section > Coincident rests of the same duration in opposing voices > Show every rest in each voice.

That is also selected.


You have to insert an explicit bar rest in each voice in the first bar yes, but provided your notation options are set like that, all subsequent bars between bar 1 and where the voices enter should have a bar rest for each voice.

Have you tried to duplicate what I did?

The process of typing Shift-B rest Enter, or using the Insert bar rest button, is entering an explicit bar rest in each voice in the first bar.

It’s necessary because Dorico only starts a voice when you put notes or explicit rests into it. If the voice doesn’t have notes until bar 10, it won’t have rests until bar 10 unless you put them there. The only exception is the primary voice, which is automatically padded with rests (unless you’ve set the Layout Options for them not to show).

Yes indeed, although I used the bars and barlines popover (Shift-B) and entered “rest” into it, but the result is the same. I do tend to try out what users are talking about, unless the answer is very clear immediately. As a result of this, I was also just checking the relevant docs, updating them, and improving the indexterms.

You’ll have to excuse the mediocre notes I used to produce a generic result, which is here with rest colors shown to show the difference between explicit (black) and implicit (grey) rests:

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I was following the advice Daniel gave here,


In that post, Daniel writes to set the Notation Options as you have, and as covered in this thread, and to input an explicit bar rest “in each voice”. So what you initially described is expected.

Nonetheless, this journey was helpful as it’s prompted me to improve the relevant docs so all’s well that ends well.