Removing final (pickup) beat from last bar in a choral flow

I’m hoping somebody can tell me how to remove the last beat from the final bar (4/4) in my flow.

I’ve spent an hour trying to learn how to do this very simple task. I’m in 4/4, and each verse starts with a quarter note pickup. I want to remove 1 beat (1 quarter note) from the FINAL bar in the song. But I don’t want to turn it into a 3/4 bar.

I have read and re-read help articles, and have watched videos. I found 2 places in the documentation that give me DIFFERENT ways to do this. Neither works. I have been over them again and again, pretending that I don’t know English, and double-checking myself on every word in the instructions. They still don’t work.

It should be an exceedingly intuitive process, I would think. But it is not, and not even Dorico’s own documentation staff seem to know how to tell somebody how to do it.

$600 is a lot to pay for this kind of frustration when I can get the same frustration for free at Musescore.

These directions won’t remove a single beat. They remove the entire bar:

https://steinberg.help/dorico_pro/v3.5/en/dorico/topics/notation_reference/notation_reference_bars/notation_reference_bars_beats_deleting_system_track_t.html?hl=final%2Cbeat%2Cbar%2Cflow

And these directions won’t remove a BEAT from the measure; they simply delete any NOTES that exist during the beats in question. So, for example, putting the carat at beat one and entering “-1q” into the popover turns a whole note into a dotted quarter, and leaves a quarter rest at the end of the 4-beat bar.:

https://steinberg.help/dorico_pro/v3.5/en/dorico/topics/write_mode/write_mode_notations_input/write_mode_bars_barlines_popover_r.html?hl=final%2Cbeat%2Cbar%2Cend%2Cflow

Select the note that’s on the third beat and type Shift-B, “final.”

Shift-B, -1q should also work, but you need to first select the final quarter rest. Not the downbeat of the measure.

I feel your frustration, but next time don’t spin your wheels for an hour. Ask here and get a (usually) quick solution!

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I’m really sorry to hear you didn’t get the answers you needed, especially given that you’re right that the docs aren’t accurate on this. I do check the functionality of everything that goes in, so I’m sorry that I appear to have been mistaken when I wrote this. (Anywhere else, i.e. in the middle of bars, this both deletes notes in the selection and “fills in the gap”, whether or not Insert mode is active.)

Dan’s tip to input the final barline first, then remove the excess bar at the end is good - although “-1q” apparently wouldn’t work either in this situation. I think Dorico is reluctant to leave an impartial bar without encouragement from an explicit barline - I’ll double check this with the developers, and improve the documentation for future manuals. Thanks again for bringing it up.

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Funny enough, I’ve had to do this exact task this morning and had to use trial and error since shift-b -1q would not work as intended. I had to input the final bar manually at the fourth beat and delete the one beat-bar remaining.

I’ve often wondered why Shift-B: trim doesn’t take care of this. I find the Shift-B popover syntax to be a guessing game, because it seems to respond differently given whatever the current status of Insert Mode might be, coupled with whether I’m working in an open time signature. I always get to where I’m trying to go, but it’s maybe after three or four attempts.

Trimming the flow typically only trims to complete bars. Dorico doesn’t have any specific feature to “balance” pick-up bars with the final bar of a flow, so trimming the flow won’t cause this to happen either. But adding a final barline is normally sufficient, without need of removing the excess sub-bar-length bar at the end, as normally there isn’t one.

I’ve just spent a little bit too much time struggling with this exact issue. Thankfully I found this thread :slight_smile: (The ‘Shift-B ‘final’’ trick did it to me.) But I have a suggestion about the documentation (Bars and barlines popover ; this is what comes out when I google ‘dorico bars and barlines popover help’; I don’t know if there’s an updated version):

  1. I had no idea after reading the help page that ‘final’ would insert a final barline and trim the rest of the flow. I assumed I’d have to select a barline first.

  2. All the commands I tried which are supposed to ‘delete a beat’ etc. do not delete the beat (or whatever other duration I set): they delete the pitches and substitute them with rests. (So the duration of the bar does not change.) Is this intentional?

[Dorico Pro 3.5.11]