Change placement for jumps ("D.S. al Coda" etc.)

• Aug 4, 2021 - 00:28

I know this has been discussed before but I couldn't find a clear recent answer - currently if I add a jump like "D.S. al Coda" it appears above the top staff. But in most of the scores I've consulted such jumps are shown below the bottom staff, especially vocal+piano arrangements, for choral music it seems about 50/50 and for the one orchestral score I found an example (Mozart 40!) it was under the bottom staff.
But when I add a D.C. or D.S. jump not only is there no "style" shown in the inspector, but no "placement" option either, so it's not clear at all how I should change this? Is it best done by just hiding the actual D.S. jump (just there for playback) then creating a staff text element to show it under the bottom staff? Just that I'm not sure how to ensure it uses the correctly styling - there's no "Jump" or "Dal Segno" or "Da Capo" styles I can see anywhere.


We'd need a setting "Below system" in addition to the existing "Above/Below (Staff)". This had been discussed earlier and elsewhere, IIRC in connection with measure numbers

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

Yes but how do you know which style to use?
Also I did just realise using the "X" key to flip the placement "works", except that it only flips to beneath the top staff which I don't think I've ever seen done anywhere. And it does seem odd that you can flip placement with a shortcut key but not the inspector.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

"Repeat text right" doesn't work...(as in, it's not right aligned within the measure, it seems to be right aligned with the first note/rest of the measure which doesn't seem very useful...)

This shows an "actual" D.S. al Coda flipped using X, and one created as Staff Text and the "Repeat text right" style:


In reply to by Dylan Nicholson1

Indeed, repeat text is kind of unique in being aligned with the measure itself rather than a specific segment. So you can't fake its appearance satisfactorily using any other element type. You'll need to settle for manual adjustments. But at least the font characteristics will be right if you use the appropriate text style.

In reply to by Jojo-Schmitz

No, I think it's an oversight in the Inspector. It's definitely intended that it be possible to flip the repeat text below, I do this often as well for the special cases where it seems appropriate. For example, lead sheets, where the space above the staff is too full of chord symbols, and where I might need additional text like "after solos" or "take repeats". And in that case, the distinction between "below top staff" and "below bottom staff" isn't normally relevant as there is just the one staff.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Hmm, I had been thinking changing the placement to "below top staff" didn't make sense for score directions ("system text" as MuseScore calls it). But D.C./D.S jumps might be one exception it could be useful.
FWIW the vocal scores I checked had it below the piano part (bottom staff) though.
So there's really no way of having staff text right aligned within a measure? That seems an odd oversight, it's not that uncommon to have instructions like "fade to nothing" ("al niente") or even instrument change instructions that you'd sensibly want aligned with the right barline.

In reply to by Dylan Nicholson1

No, there is no way to align staff text with a measure. I sometimes use repeat text specifically as a hack to get this (one must be careful to not disrupt the place in doing so). A nice way to right align or center text. It would actually be pretty trivial to add a new text type that like staff text but measure attached. Or to expose the existing "layout to parent width" property (I think that's the one?) that is what allows repeat text to have this property. I'd totally favor that.

As for placement of system text below top staff, this was the default setting for the lead sheet template and possibly others for quite some time, as a way of having text both above and below the top staff. So I'd not want to break scores that depend on that, or any other possible use someone would have come up with for the current behavior over the many years it has been in place. but adding a new value for that property to me is a no-brainer in terms of usefulness and carries zero risk.

The rules for which types of scores have the DS etc in which position are complex and subjective, unfortunately. Vocal scores usually go above; instrumental parts and single-line lead sheets often go below, full instrument scores either above the top staff or below the bottom staff, piano scores may go between the staves, etc. Above the top staff was chosen as really the only sensible default that "works" for all cases even if not ideal for many.

As noted, it seems an oversight the placement property is missing in the Inspector, as it is definitely supported and works via "X". The idea of supporting a "below bottom staff" option as something totally separate from the placement relative to the actual attached staff has come up often before and I definitely support it. As well as the idea of being able to specify additional staves to repeat system text on (e.g., in on orchestral score, I might want the DS above the top staff but then repeated above the strings).

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