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"Instructional" editions

Posted: 11 Apr 2018, 15:15
by Schonbergian
Is there still a place for these in today's Urtext world?

I own the Henle Bach WTC but frequently refer back to Bruno Mugellini's edition for suggestions on fingering, phrasing, and interpretation. The same with Schnabel's Beethoven, even though I own the Schenker.

With all the strides we've made in period performance practice and research since many of these early 20th-century editions have come out, can a case be made for a modern revival of these editions?

Re: "Instructional" editions

Posted: 14 Apr 2018, 17:25
by John Ruggero
As mentioned in a previous post, I think that such editions are very helpful for reference purposes, since it is always good to know the opinion of excellent musicians. And since so many original sources are available online and good urtext and critical editions are so prevalent, and no one is now at the mercy of personal editions as their only source (unless they choose to be), the previously valid objections to such editions no longer hold.

For the same reason, I think that new personal editions are to be encouraged, as long as they are identified as such and are carried out responsibly. Less experienced musicians often need help of various kinds not available in critical editions. For example, fingering and pedaling in piano music. And in dealing with textual problems, critical editions often have a "hands-off"' approach that does not offer enough help of a practical kind.

Re: "Instructional" editions

Posted: 19 Apr 2018, 03:25
by Schonbergian
This is why I like the Schenker edition of the Beethoven sonatas so much - it's as close as one can get the composer's intentions and it still manages to be helpful in almost every way without being intrusive.