Ossia join issue/request

I’m wondering if it might be possible at some point to get a little more control over ossias, the barline joins specifically (or, perhaps, for reasons that will be obvious in a moment, the ability to create a Bracket and Barline Change mid-system).

I know there was a previous suggestion to allow ossias on SATB music to act as an exception to normal barline joining behavior (https://www.steinberg.net/forums/viewtopic.php?f=246&t=138968), though that’s easy enough to deal with with a Bracket and Barline Change, assuming you realize that’s what you need to do–took me a few minutes.

But after figuring that out, I’ve run into an issue because I’ve got an ossia at the end of a piece, and while I do want internal barlines to join, I don’t want the final barline to join, as the dotted double bar join looks wonky to my eye (the effect is more pronounced when actually looking at the full score as opposed to the attached pic; none of the other choral staves join, so the one on the ossia looks off). Problem is a Bracket and Barline change can only happen once per system, and only at the beginning of the system, and it doesn’t seem like there are any additional controls in Engrave or Layout options or any of the properties panels to enable this. I’m sure I can work around it for now (or even just leave it be), but in the fullness of time, it’d be nice to be able to tweak it a little more precisely.

ossia join.PNG

We don’t have any plans to allow multiple bracket and barline changes per system, I’m afraid.

Thanks, Daniel.

Really I brought up bracket and barline changes less trying to make a specific advisement about how the feature should work or be changed (I realize things work the way they do and rejiggering any given feature is no trivial task), and more just wondering if at some point, some feature might make the effect possible. Even the ability to draw dotted lines arbitrarily across or between staves or combinations thereof (though, yes, a bit of this is currently possible with the barline popover in specific circumstances), like you might see in a Ferneyhough or similar score, would be enough in this specific case.

As it is, I do indeed have a way to work around it (and as of a few minutes ago, fully in-Dorico too!), so it’s nothing to lose sleep over–more just something to keep on the back burner if you’re ever revisiting ossias or other potentially relevant features :slight_smile:

We can’t realistically provide every possible degree of freedom with Dorico’s behaviours and options. We provide quite a lot of different options for how barlines should join ossias. Our decision to join special barlines when you choose to join ossias with dashed barlines is based on as wide a survey of published scores as we can practically manage given our limited budget, time and access. I don’t think it’s likely that we’ll be revisiting this specific area in the near future, but of course I would never say never.

That’s entirely reasonable, especially given that the options that are already available in Dorico in this realm are vastly more comprehensive than at least one of the other big programs on the market (I looked, out of curiosity, though I should remind myself it’s not worth the headache in the future).

Just today, in another thread, I was saying “…there’s the caveat that the people programming the software can’t necessarily take such an ‘anything goes’ approach (they have to go home and eat at some point)…”

I just figured if the suggestion is out there in the aether, my chances are better than if I keep it in my head. Like (hopefully) many or most users here, I’m not in any rush and I don’t have any expectations :wink: