Dorico development issue

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hautbois baryton
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by hautbois baryton »

David Ward wrote: 31 Aug 2023, 14:08 I've always (since my teens in the 1950s) labelled instrument changes twice. Initially at the first available rest with ‘take Cor Anglais’ (or whatever) and then again (without ‘take’) immediately before or at the first playing of the new instrument. I can't remember which orchestral player advised me to do this, but I've followed the advice ever since.
Just wanted to say bravo for this, David!
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John Ruggero
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by John Ruggero »

I am pretty sure that Arnstein did the same, David.
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Fred G. Unn
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

David Ward wrote: 31 Aug 2023, 14:08 I've always (since my teens in the 1950s) labelled instrument changes twice.
John Ruggero wrote: 01 Sep 2023, 02:23 I am pretty sure that Arnstein did the same, David.
This is definitely the standard for parts. I'm sort of ambivalent about whether the "to" indication needs to be in the score or not and have seen that handled both ways. The real question here is where to put the key change for transposing instruments when an instrument change is involved. Gould says to make the change "as far in advance of the entry as possible, i.e.at the first available rest," and I think this is wrong, unhelpful, and not the current standard, at least in the Broadway and jazz worlds. Placing the key change at the bar of entry is another clue to the player that something is different in case they missed the "to" indication.

When you are reading a Broadway show, big band gig, or studio date, your eye naturally jumps ahead to the next entrance to see if there's anything tricky ahead. It is easier than you might imagine to skip over any text indications, so the key sig change is just another conspicuous indication to the player that something is different. It's saved me countless times. As a parallel example, I doubt anyone here would advocate for placing clef changes at the "first available rest." Gould herself says, "... retain this clef until the barline before the next entry. This placing alerts the performer to the change at the relevant point (i.e. at the entry), and not further back before a group of rests, where it may be overlooked." (pg 9) If it's important to place clef changes conspicuously, I think the same goes for key sig changes with instrument changes. A "late" instrument change at the bar of entry is certainly the standard in Broadway and jazz and I think Gould's advice with this is just wrong. It's a pity Dorico adopted her way of handling this.
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John Ruggero
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by John Ruggero »

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Fred G. Unn
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

Yep, I wish the Dorico devs had gone with this ^^^

In the early aughts I was often playing the reading sessions for the BMI Composers Workshop at Local 802 in NYC. The "house band" was/is (it still exists) a band of professional jazz and Broadway musicians and we were all very strong readers and proficient doublers. Obviously, it was very interesting compositionally, but it was also fascinating notationally. At a standard reading session each composer was allocated 20 minutes with the band. If a composer had a 10 minute piece, but wasted 5 minutes of it on notational questions or mistakes due to notational clarity, then that only left 5 minutes for other issues. I learned a lot of lessons on how to not waste rehearsal time with poor notation back then, and still make a lot of house style decisions based on it. This is definitely one of them. If someone misses an instrument change, and the composer was recording it (MiniDisc or DAT back then LOL) as a demo, then there's no time for a redo. Making the actual change as conspicuous as possible is definitely an advantage for sightreaders. For me, this means a "late" change like John's example. I'd love to see Dorico adopt this method.

(There's a PITA workaround with independent key sigs but it would be great to avoid that.)
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John Ruggero
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by John Ruggero »

Why I wish they would consult actual music more.

Again, I am pretty sure that Arnstein also followed this practice. But most of the stuff we prepared was without key signatures, so it didn't come up that often. But the instrument labels were very prominently displayed for the reasons you mentioned. Time is money in professional orchestral rehearsals; a lot money. One major screw-up and you might never get that gig again.
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NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

Fred G. Unn wrote: 01 Sep 2023, 13:22 Gould says to make the change "as far in advance of the entry as possible, i.e.at the first available rest," and I think this is wrong, unhelpful, and not the current standard.
Totally agree with you!
First announce that the player has to take another instrument (with take-to-prends-prende, don't know in German), then again at the entry, BOLD and BIG (I even use boxed text!), the new instrument name, the clef change and the key signature change!
I'm sorry about how Dorico does this currently, but I'm sure they know about it and will improve it in due course. In Sibelius one just creates the instrument change at the new location and the warning appears at the end of the previously played part (not that there are no issues with how Sib does this, but it is closer to the standard).
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Fred G. Unn
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by Fred G. Unn »

NeeraWM wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 06:44 First announce that the player has to take another instrument (with take-to-prends-prende, don't know in German), then again at the entry, BOLD and BIG (I even use boxed text!), the new instrument name,
It's a minor issue with an easy workaround using Shift-X text, but unfortunately Dorico currently uses the same Paragraph Style (Instrument Change Labels) for both the "to ..." indication and the new instrument name at the point of entry. It would be nice to be able to specify separate styles here so the user could do this automatically the way you describe.

I've also seen the house style that puts the instrument name at the point of entry in all caps. It would be a nice addition if Dorico could allow for an all caps style like in InDesign so the user could set that as an option too.
NeeraWM
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by NeeraWM »

Fred G. Unn wrote: 05 Sep 2023, 13:21 I've also seen the house style that puts the instrument name at the point of entry in all caps. It would be a nice addition if Dorico could allow for an all caps style like in InDesign so the user could set that as an option too.
This would be very nice indeed!
Seeing how many good things the Adobe Suite has inspired into Dorico, I can only be positive! :-)
MichelRE
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Re: Dorico development issue

Post by MichelRE »

it's important that you POST on the Dorico forum, very detailed (if possible with examples and images) descriptions of these requests.

the Dorico development team ARE very active on the forum, and DO take serious and well-thought requests at heart.
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