D.S. al Fine Definition And 3 Easy Steps To Success

What is the D.S. al Fine Definition anyways?  Well, it involves a couple of things:  1) locating where to go back and repeat, and 2) deciding where the end of the song is.

Let’s tackle both of these things right now…


The D.S. stands for the Italian word Dal Segno.  It literally means “from the sign” in the English language.

Look at the example below.

d.s. al fine definition

Do you see the little “S”-shaped sign?  That is the sign Dal Segno is referring to.


In English, Fine means “end”.  This is the actual end of the piece.  You can almost always find a final double bar line located here.

3 Easy Steps To Success

Here’s an easy guideline to put this into practice:

  1. Start at the beginning and play all the way through to the words D.S. al Fine.
  2. Go back to the “S” sign (not the beginning) and keep playing.
  3. Continue playing until you reach the word Fine.  This is the end of the song.

That’s all there is to it!  After you have practiced doing this a few times, you will see just how easy it really is.

Extra Practice

Using the 3 steps above, can you see how you would play this song?

d.s. al fine definition

Why Wouldn’t I Repeat at the Beginning?

You might be confusing D.S. al Fine with D.C. al Fine.  Check out the D.C. al Fine definition to see the difference.

Whenever you see the letter “S” after the letter “D” (D.S. for example) in a musical term, this always means to look for an “S” sign in the music.  This is your starting point for the repeat.  Never go back to the beginning.

Practice Tips

As always, make sure to look over your music completely before you start playing.  Decide how to tackle musical terms like these.  Use your finger to trace through the process of playing from beginning to end before you get started.  It may be helpful to circle some of the terms with your pencil so they will be noticeable while playing.

There you go.  Now that you know about the D.S. al Fine definition, you are set to tackle it every time you see it in your music.  You are on your way to mastering all things music!

2 thoughts on “D.S. al Fine Definition And 3 Easy Steps To Success”

  1. I am a music major and never quite fully understood this until now. This is the simplest explanation I’ve read. Thanks for the post!

  2. How exciting, but still a bit sad I am sure. I rbemmeer coming to your new studio (1818) before you were even fully moved in for engagement photos Downtown! How time flies!

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