Different time signatures simultaneously in different parts of the score

• Apr 17, 2015 - 18:27


at the time I edit a score in which there is at the same time different clock styles in different voices.
For example, Flute 1 in 7/8 and Cello in 3/4 same time.
The input I have more or less done so.
However, it would be nice if the bar lines are no longer arranged among themselves but as it were mathematically correct.
To illustrate, here is an extract from the handwritten score:


The right sound when playing is secondary.
The important thing is the arrangement of bar lines.
This is very namely the orientation for the Interaction ...
Would be nice if someone could help me.
Thank you in advance

Attachment Size
versch_Taktarten.jpg 128.23 KB


You can make this happen in a number of ways, but basically, the idea will be to enter to music all in the same "real" time signature than mark some barlines invisible and add others graphically (by dragging barlines to individual notes). for example, here it is all 4/4, but I hid the barlines on the flute part and added graphically barlines from the palette to simulate 3/4. I also used Time Signature Properties (right click menu) to make the time signature display as 3/4 on the flute part. The invisible greyed out barlines are shown greyed out on screen, but of course they won't print.


In reply to by Marc Sabatella

Thanks a lot for this unexpected fast reply Marc.
But in the end there are some questions left...
First of all, there is no basic time signature - for all different instruments changes it several times in the score. In the score layout I used the 7/8 as a baisc because it is the first time signature.
But they all changes to 9/8 or 3/4 or 2/4 or 5/4 - so what would you suggest as a basic?
The next question that remains open: is there a chance for an automatism? It's because the score has more than 130 pages...
And as third, and hopefully last question: you mentioned a numbers of ways.
Is there an easier way than the one you discribed?

Best regards and once again thanks a lot

In reply to by mwpunkt

By "a number of ways", I just meant, it is up to you to define what your basic time signature is based on what might make the process go most smoothly. I guess for simplicity I'd pick whichever is used in the majority of staves for any given passage. Or you could do some math and figure out the least common denominator, thus creating one large measure that eliminates the need to hide barlines. But the basic process is the same in any case. And indeed, it won't be fun to do for 130 pages.

I think if it were me and I really wanted to do this, I'd have the score all be in one time signature (or one at a time, anyhow) but then copy and paste to parts in different time signatures. But frankly, I never find this sort of thing worth the trouble, as it just leads to confusion in rehearsal as you try get different musicians to synchronize. When I write polymetric music, I simply put it all in one time signature and let some of the instruments have line that cross barlines. It's much easier in rehearsal as I only have to conduct one downbeat and we can all agree on where we are if I say, "let's take it from measure 73" or whatever.

In reply to by Quoc Dong

You could do it this way:
1. Pretend that each barline extends through the entire system
2. Place the deduced time signature for each division (in this example, there are 1/8 measures)
3. Hide some time signatures and rename the others
4. Hide some barlines and extend the others using the "Spanned staves" parameter in the inspector
The main caveat is that any notes that cross the invisible barlines will need to be split into tied notes.

See the attached images:

In reply to by CombatCube

Thanks for your helping hand!!!
It's a bit tricky but it works!
So you have to think about the time signature in advance - before placing the notes.
And for the 'final apperance' you have to go through a lot of formatting.
But I think it's ok.
The sound output seems to be ok. No worry about any delays or wrong interpretations.
Knowig how to create a working excerpt to upload for you guys it would be already finished.
But how to do this. Especially that it works on all stations. Any suggest?
It is because there is an copyright on the original score and I don't want to post it complete...
Just to give you an impression - how shall I handle this?

I could once again post some hardcopys but in the end it won't fit.
But finally your proposal works!
And it's more or less the easiest one - even when you have to do a lot of formatting works.

So, when you're interested on an excerpt -please let me know how to manage...

Thank you all

I needed an example, so I have now tried to do it in Musescore. I am in Sweden rehearsing Nik Bärtsch Modules, and here on Tolsjövägen 12 I was inspired to compose a swedish hopsa with the time signatures 3/4, 4/4 and 5/8. I use the tips from Marc Sabatelli. Change the name of 4/4 to 3/4 and 5/8, hiding and adding barlines. To make 5/8 bars in 4/4 I use quintuplets. You can find it here: https://musescore.com/user/3541/scores/11498956

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