Staff Labels for selected staves only

For a Piano-Vocal-Score layout with three voices and piano I would like to have the staff labels for each of the three vocal parts but not for the piano part.
The “Staff Labels” settings in "Layout Options / Staves and Systems " are for all staves, not for individual staff.
How can I achieve this?

Could you just change the instrument name for Piano to nothing? (Delete the name in Setup).

Thanks for your answer.
Nice idea :slight_smile:
But then the name disappears also in the full score and in the piano part.
The Piano-Vocal score is an additional layout to the full score and to the regular parts.

Would it be an idea to have two identical pianos in your score, one with instrument name and one without, and choose in each layout which of the two pianos you want?

The Piano part gets its name from the name of the layout by default, (Setup Mode - right side), so you shouldn’t see any problem with the Piano Part. (Typically this is the large font name in the upper left corner of the part).

If you can manage without abbreviated staff labels, you can set it up like this:

Full name: Soprano
Short name: Soprano
(and the other voices in a similar matter)

Full name: Piano
Short name: " "

Full score + piano layout: Use full names
Piano-vocal score: Use short names

If this doesn’t work, I think you need to use two pianos. Maybe you can link their content using cues.

Smart idea andgle!

Yes it is a possibilty.
Of course I would prefer an elegant solution, it’s Dorico after all :wink:


I did not notice this.

Unfortunately for this particular score which is one piece of a whole Musical it will not do because I have to name this part “Keyboard 2”.
But it is a really smart solution indeed :slight_smile:

It seems then that it is natively not possible, maybe is it something for the future.

Stefaan has the right idea. You can set up a conductor score that omits the Rehearsal Piano and still have the Keyboard part in the Conductor Score and Keyboardist’s part. At worst you may have to copy and paste the Keyboard notes into the Rehearsal Piano part, but often the two parts are not exactly identical anyway.

teacue, can you say why you would prefer not to see a staff label for the keyboard/piano staves when you are showing labels for the other staves in the same system? Won’t it look rather odd?

I am glad you ask Daniel.

The fast answer is:
for piano-vocal scores there is no need for labelling the piano part but it is very usefull or even necessary to label the voice parts when they are polyphonic.

The longer answer including some practical reasons why it is usefull or even necessary:
I write scores for Musicals.
The typical performance material consists of:
. Full orchestra-score
. Instrument parts for each instrument
. vocal parts containing all voices when a piece is polyphonic
. piano-vocal score which contains all voices plus piano accompaniment (for rehearsal without orchestra or for the singers or for whom ever)
. I never had to write a piano reduction

Note that the distribution of voices in a musical is is not necessary done with Sopran, Alto, Tenor Bass but rather with characters.
For the naming of characters in the vocal score of one piece I encounter several situations:
. One character or group with one melody: no need to label the staff, the name of the character is placed at the beginning within the staff.
. Several characters or groups who alternatively sing one voice: first () no need to label the staff, the name of the characters are written above each bar where the characters appear.
. Two or more voices each voice alternatively sung by several characters: there is first (
) also no need to label the staves and the name of the characters are written above each bar where the characters appear.
. Two or more characters or groups with a dedicated melody: as each character or group has its own melody in its own staff it is necessary then to label the staves

(*) It can of course happen that one character may sing over a longer part, in this case it is of course usefull and even necessary to either repeat the character name above the staff or … to have the possibility to label the staff for a few systems only.

Of course each described situations above can happen individually for a whole piece but it can also happen that all situations occur together in one piece!
So in an ideal world one would have the possibility to label or not to label a staff systemwise :slight_smile:

I would like to give a practical and real example of a rehearsal situation.
I once directed West Side Story with young people.
In West Side Story there is the very famous song called “Quintett” which is at some point a five-part voices song.
As a lot of piano-vocal scores of the past the piano-vocal score of the well known “Quintett” has no staff labels.
All the character names are written within the staves, also at the end of the song when it becomes five-part voices

At the beginning of the piece as long as the piece is one-part voice or two-part voices it is not so difficult to follow, but as soon as it becomes three- four- or five-part voices the individual labels above the staff are not enough as soon as you turn a page, because the individual labels are not repeated and, as previously mentioned there is no staff labels. It begins to be rather difficult for the conductor to follow.
Don’t forget that I am talking about a rehearsal situation where, as director or choir conductor, you have to react very fast when you are trying to balance five voices :wink:
And add to this the fact that there are only six bars on each page when the Quintet is five-part voices and you can imagine that if the characters are not very clearly labelled you can get trouble knowing who is singing what right now :slight_smile:

For the first choir rehearsal I forgot to label the staves and I can assure you that I felt quite chaotic.
I then labelled each staff and it was much better!

As I happen to have written a lot of polyphonic choir pieces for my musicals I try to create scores which are clearly labelled in order to help the performers, in particular to help the conductors.

I wrote this in order to give you maybe a practical reason to include the feature of being able to separetely label the staves and this not only staffwise but also systemwise.

I did not write anything about why I think that labeling the piano part is not necessary.
Just this maybe: when in your vocal score you already have: Maria, Anita, Tony, Jets and Sharks on the left side of the page you do not need “Piano” to add to the complexity :wink:
So I don’t think it would look odd but rather clearer.

This doesn’t solve you’re problem, but in case you’re not aware:
As of 1.2, you can have staff labels on individual systems (but this applies to all staves in the layout).
Create a system break, select the flag and open the properties panel (engrave mode). Under ‘Staff labels’, you can choose between Full, Abbreviated and None.

I agree that maximum flexibility of staff labeling for purposes similar to what @teacue mentioned would be a great asset when it can be provided.

Many piano/vocal opera scores label each vocal staff on every system, but the piano part is only labelled on the first system, if at all.

I appreciate some of the new functionality for staff labels like line breaks.
I still miss the ability to allow to have staff labels visible or not on a layout basis as mentioned in the posts above.
Is it something we can expect?

It’s not something that we’re working on at the moment, I’m afraid, but of course improving the flexibility of the software in this and many other areas is planned.

Thanks for your answer Daniel.
Nice to hear that improving flexibilty in this area is planned.

At the moment to be able to have a Piano part labelled in the score and not labelled in the piano-vocal part (because it is not necessary and not usual to label a piano part in a piano-vocal score) it is necessary to duplicate the piano staff: one with a label and one without.
Of course it is not a great deal but Dorico could surely do it better.

I hope it will be considered rather sooner than later.

You can block out the label with a ‘white’ text box. Not elegant but it is quick to copy/paste.

A few months later I would like to add some thoughts to the thematic already discussed in this thread.
As I raised this theme I was working exclusively with one flow per project but in the meantime I learned the extremely powerfull and usefull possibilities working with multiple flows but this particulal issue is now growing with multiple flows.

Here is the situation:
A score for a Musical with 21 songs/flows
Four songs are polyphonic up to 4 voices.
It’s about the vocal score which should contain all the songs
For the songs with one vocal voice only there is no need for a staff label name in the vocal score.
The “Staff labels” setting for this is then: “None” for the first and for the subsequent systems.

Now for the four polyphonic songs it is necessary to label the staves because of the complexity of the distribution.
This is not only something like Sopran, Alto, Tenor and Bass but several characters or choirs are singing several parts within a song and even changin within a song.
Thanks to the great instrument change feature of Dorico this is very easy to accurately show and label all these changes.
The “Staff labels” setting for this should be then: “Full” for the first system and “Abbreviated” for the subsequent systems.
Unfortunately these settings are for a whole layout and at the moment it is not possible to have different settings for different flows.

I could solve the issue with duplicating the monophonic vocal parts in an extra player and giving a blank staff name.
With this workaround everything is fine for the vocal score.

Now for the vocal + piano score I have the remaining problem with the Piano part which should not have a Staff name at all.
The piano part must also be duplicated.

I am sure Daniel that you will agree to say that duplicating the monophonic vocal parts and duplicating all the piano parts is too much redundanz for this quite common task and for such an elegant program like Dorico :wink:

I do hope you will soon add some flexibility to staff labelling.
I am aware that you already said that “improving the flexibility of the software in thi areas is planned” but I just wanted to show that this issue is even bigger working with multiple flows.

When you create a system break, you can specify what kind of staff labels should show there, e.g. whether they should be full or short or none, via the Properties panel.