Layout Option for staff label on first system of subsequent pages

I’m doing a lot of theatre pads at the moment. Multi-reed players would find it very convenient to have their current instrument on the first system of each new page as a staff label. Helps when rehearsing and start near the top of a page. It saves them the effort of going back a page and hunting for whatever instrument they should be on at the time.

The idea would be to have another option in Layout Options > Staff Labels, just like the existing ones but:

“Staff labels on first system of subsequent pages: Full; Abbreviated; None”

If there’s no way of doing this currently, might it be added to the list of future enhancements?

Thank you!

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You can do this currently (albeit manually) by inserting a frame or system break and then changing the stave labels to “full”. Just to demonstrate my point: here’s a hymn where all the staves in the picture are the same “voice stave”. I just used the system break to plop in a random full label in the middle just because I can. You can do this at the top of a page.

Would you definitely want this as a staff label, with the system indented to accommodate it, or as a instrument label above the staff without indenting the system? Like for instrument changes?

Good question. Were it merely an Instrument Label, perhaps it could be in brackets to indicate that its not a change and simply a reminder. Having said that, I’m not fond of Instrument Labels., in that they can get in the way of other objects and I often find myself relocating them in Engrave Mode.

However, either full-fat Staff Labels or Instrument Label would both fit the bill.

Thanks, @Romanos . That would work when I’m doing final edits but pads often change during previews of a show and I don’t like the idea of introducing manual System Breaks only to have to remove them.

Here’s hoping the team can introduce something more automatic…

I was operating under the assumption that you were to the final engraving phase. Also, I’m not suggesting that you add them for the sake of adding them, but rather to add them where the natural page break already occurred to allow you to assign the label. But if things aren’t cemented, then you are correct that this is not the most elegant solution.

I’d rather see it above. I should know better than to mention it, but I suspect it’d be less of a headache to implement given that staff labels would require variable indents and would impact on casting off, whereas instrument labels above wouldn’t impact on casting off.

If I could piggyback on the request: it’d also be nice to be able to do this on a per-system basis. There seems to be a convention in commercial percussion parts (probably as a result of the way Sibelius handles percussion), whereby a five line staff is used for unpitched percussion (switching to pitched instruments seamlessly). In these sorts of parts, it’s pretty much essential to have a reminder of which instrument’s on which stave at the start of each line. Staff labels waste too much horizontal space, and labels above are currently a manual process.

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I think there is a more general use case: to be able to add reminders of anything that is currently in play. eg in string parts there is often the need to add (pizz) or (con sord) reminders, especially after page turns or multirests.


Multi-reed player here. The way I’ve most commonly seen it done (and indeed the way I do it) is to put it in the page header, not in the actual music. If I have this on page 1 …

… then on page 2 I might have this.

(This is from an accordion-bound part, obviously the location may be moved if saddle stitched.) This way satisfies the librarian’s need to have every page sufficiently marked with the correct player, and the player’s need to know what instrument they are playing at the beginning of the page as they can just glance up at the header. Some sort of token to show what instrument is being played in the first bar of the page would be a very welcome feature! As of now I just do manual overrides in reed parts.


OT: funny the flute is a reed… never mind

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It’s just American theater terminology for ‘woodwind’. Wind band terminology calls all wind instruments ‘horns’ (which I guess is appropriate in that they all have a bell).