Glissando lines

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Glissando lines indicate a continuous transition between two notes, which can be smooth or in chromatic steps. They can have straight lines or wiggly lines, and can be shown with a text indication or as a line without text.

Because glissando lines are positioned between noteheads, the steepness of their angle reflects the interval between the notes: the steeper the angle, the greater the interval.

There are different conventions regarding the playing techniques for glissando and portamento. Some people understand glissando lines to indicate a chromatic scale between the two notes, either rising or falling in a series of half-steps (semitones), and portamento lines to indicate a smooth, continuous glide between the two notes. However, the terms glissando and portamento can be used interchangeably in other cases.

You can input both glissando lines and portamento lines in Dorico Elements, and you can easily change their style after they have been input.

Glissando lines in Dorico Elements automatically follow the notes at each end, meaning if you change the pitch of either note, the glissando line end positions move accordingly. Dorico Elements automatically positions glissando lines so they do not collide with accidentals.

An example glissando line with text shown and a wiggly line
An example portamento line with text shown and a straight line

Glissando lines can cross system breaks and page breaks. If text is shown for glissando lines that span system or page breaks, then that text is shown on every glissando line segment. By default, the start and end positions of each segment match the original start and end points of the whole glissando line.