Lyrics colliding with staves

In a choral piece for SATB with every voice split in 2 (on one stave) I get the collision between the lyrics in the 2nd bass voice and the next soprano stave. The screenshot is attached. I have tried to de-select and re-select ‘Automatically resolve collisions…’ button as well as increasing the gap between the staves but nothing resolved the issue.
Lyrics (226 KB)
Thank you for your help!

Welcome to the forum, Jan. I’m sorry to say that under some circumstances Dorico can produce results like this, and that you will need to either adjust some vertical spacing manually in Engrave mode, adjust the rastral/staff size on the Page Setup page of Layout Options, or manually insert system breaks in Engrave mode to resolve it.

The reason this happens is that there is inherent circularity in the problem of spacing, casting off and then justifying music. Human engravers get around it by figuring it all out in advance before they start punching music into plates, but of course we expect our software to be able to handle all of this for us in real time. The problem is that Dorico doesn’t know how much music it can get into a frame until it knows how wide and how tall it is, and it doesn’t know how wide or tall it is until it is cast off, and it can’t cast it off until it knows how wide it is… and so on. So Dorico makes some guesses early in the layout process based on the nature of the music, e.g. the presence of lyrics, tempo, rehearsal marks, dynamics, etc. – things that will typically have a larger impact on the vertical space that each staff takes up. But because it can’t know which bars will actually end up on the same system yet, it can’t fully take them into account precisely, so it has to guess. When it comes to actually laying the music out, it can’t go back and fix all of those assumptions, because then it would have to start the whole process again, so having decided that it will probably be able to fit (say) three systems on a page, it duly does so, and sometimes if there is a lot of stuff outside the staff, this can result in collisions as you’ve found.

If your music is consistently marked with both dynamics above the staff at all points in the music and lyrics below the staff, as the PDF you’ve attached here shows, I think a combination of slightly reducing the staff size and increasing the ideal distances between staves on the Vertical Spacing page of Layout Options will reduce the amount of manual adjustment you need to make.

Thank you very much Daniel, this has been very helpful, since I do tend to pack awful lot of additional information to my music :unamused: this tip will probably come in handy again.

Hello, I’ve a quite similar problem with lyrics and music frames. It looks like Dorico considers only the first line of lyrics as belonging to its staff, while the others are put outside the music frame. In my particular case, I’ve 5 lyrics lines under the same staff, and they take such a high space that not only they overflow the music frame, but the page itself. Of course, if I add a frame break I solve the problem, but I get a too empty page. Is there something I can do? Thank you in advance, I really appreciate your hard work on this wonderful software!
(I run Dorico 3.1 on a 2017 MacBook Air with Mojave 10.14.6)

If you have a lot of lines of lyrics below the bottom staff of the system, consider increasing the bottom music frame margin on the Page Setup page of Layout Options.

Thank you, Daniel, problem partially solved. Actually, my project has several short flows (it’s a vocal method with warm ups and other exercises). Therefore, increasing the margins has effects only on the bottom of the page, giving no change in exercises that stay in the upper part of the sheet. Also, I wouldn’t like to work on “space between staves” in the vertical spacing options, because my flows have normal lyrics with 1 or 2 lines. Is there maybe a way to make Layout Options affect only specified flows (I guess it’s a project-based panel, isn’t it?).

Update: quite well solved flagging again “automatically solve collisions…” (it appears that this flag corrects the collisions in the not-bottom of the page, while adjusting the inferior margin of the music frame solves the bottom of the page). Some other adjustment in the “space between systems” gives a good result. Thank you very much!

You can also change the bottom staff margin for a specific frame in Engrave mode (provided you have Dorico Pro, of course) by selecting the frame and using the Properties panel.