Changing instruments in the middle of a composition

• Jul 19, 2011 - 15:58

How do you change instruments in the middle of a composition. For example: most of the composition is for the piano, but some of the composition changes to the celesta and then a few measures later it goes back to the piano. I would rather not create a new staff just for the celesta.


In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

That's a real pain. Considering the composition I'm transcribing is 190 measures long and the changeover occurs around measure 130. The two instruments involved are actually a piccolo and a flute.

Since what you are proposing is simply a workaround, I wish to put this in as a feature request.

In reply to by astromath

I think you might be misunderstanding the suggestion. It takes only seconds to add a new staff, and seconds to turn on the "hide empty staves" option. The length of the composition is irrelevant; the suggestion takes only seconds even if your composition is 10,000 measure long. This isn't a "workaround"; it's pretty much pretty the standard way this thing is done in all notation programs.

But actually, just to change between piccolo and flute, you don't need that - just add text markings that say "to flute" or "to piccolo" as appropriate. Playback won't be affected by default, although you can customize instruments.xml to make that happen. This is, admittedly, a nuisance, but luckily, 2.0 already implements a direct way to change the playback sound midstream.

In reply to by astromath

See the attached score. You'll note for the first half, I have the piccolo part notated and the flute part empty. The second half is the other way around. Now go to Style->Edit General Style and turn on the Hide Empty Staves option. The result is as if it was one staff that changes from piccolo to flute.

So it's technically two staves, but hiding the empty one makes it so only one is visible at a time - making it indistinguishable from a single staff. This method works for playback, and also gets the transpositions right if they differ.

But as I said above, if you don't care about playback, then don't bother with all this - just use the one staff. And in 2.0, it will be possible to have even that one staff change instruments.

Attachment Size
chabge_parts.mscz 1.79 KB

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