How to get incomplete bars

• Nov 5, 2011 - 13:02

Hi all
I'm trying to arrange a piece of music which is in 2/2 time, where the phrase starts on the second beat, ie, there is one crochet in the first bar, and the time is made up in the last bar, ie, there is a minim and a crochet in the last bar.

Musescore wants to put rests in the bars to make up the right number of beats. One solution is to make the rests invisible; but the second measure of the piece needs to begin immediately after the first, so I don't want rests in that bar.

How do I get Musescore to accept incomplete bars without putting rests in it?

Many thanks


If your piece is in 2/2 time, then you should be counting in minims, not crotchets.

So your crotchet is worth half a beat, not one beat.

One way of dealing with this is to check the "Pickup Measure" box in the final part of the "Create Score" dialogue.

You would then enter the relevant time signature into it - in this case 1/4

If you didn't do it during the "Create Score" dialogue, then right click on the bar and choose "Measure Properties" when the option to change the actual time signature will be displayed.


In reply to by ChurchOrganist

BTW, is the term "anacrusis" in common use in your world? I almost never encounter it in the US among jazz or rock musicians. Even among US classical musicians, the term "pickup" is far more common in my experience. I wonder if this is another of the US versus British things like "quarter note" versus "crotchet"?

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

It was the term I was brought up with, and as I understand it is in wide use apart from the US.

The following forum discussion may amuse as well as shed light :)

Having said that my musical education is getting on for 50 years old, and the younger English generation may use the American terminology.

The term is rooted in Greek, and originated as the term for the weak syllables of a poem which occur before the main strophe. (Thank you Wikipedia)

When I first started using FInale, it was only by luck that I learned that it was called a Pickup bar - I had been searching the manual index for anacrusis :)


In reply to by Marc Sabatella

I don't believe I have ever heard the term anacrusis; or even pick up measure. But I last had music lessons in 1974 so I'm not the best person to ask! My teacher then put it in terms of the starting note, with the bar at the end making up the right number of notes for the time signature. Perhaps he thought I wasn't ready for big words.

All the best

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