Full Score versus Study Score terminology

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David Ward
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Full Score versus Study Score terminology

Post by David Ward »

Soon I expect to be having a couple of copies of a substantial score printed for preliminary circulation in two sizes, A3 & B4. I might label both sizes ‘Full Score’ on the front cover, or I could label the smaller size ‘Study Score’ (there should be no problem with e-mailing the printer two different covers).

Any opinions? One description for both sizes, or not?

Some people have commented that the B4 size (in previously printed drafts) might be a little difficult to read, but on occasion I've seen conductors work from noticeably smaller print. A3 can be a bit ungainly to handle, and maybe not so easy for reading a full page top to bottom system as a single visual unit. I think of both sizes as a potential full score, but should offer the choice. In this case anything smaller than B4 (eg A4) would be too small even for desk reading in comfort, although many published study scores are worse eg I have copies of Gurrelieder and Elektra that are barely readable because of their small print.
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Alexander Ploetz
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Re: Full Score versus Study Score terminology

Post by Alexander Ploetz »

"Full score" has nothing to do with size. It simply means that it contains all parts "in full". Therefore, virtually all so-called "study scores" are, indeed, full scores. For this issue it helps to remember the alternative term of "pocket score". If the paper format gets down to where you can put the score into your coat pocket then you can call it a study score. The other thing is: if a print is specifically meant for use in rehearsal and performance (and it sounds like it, from your description), it is, by definition, not a study score.

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Re: Full Score versus Study Score terminology

Post by OCTO »

I think that B4 is a very large size to be considered as reduced. Consider A4 or Letter with outlined and emboldened print (can be started as a new thread).

While the terminology seems to be an issue, I don't find any problem to say "study score", if it can fit or not in pocket. "Study" mostly refer to the visual staff-size. If you can put a score on the stand and conduct from it than it is not "study". I consider therefore a study score to be one which is hold in hands or on the table and read from the close distance.

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