Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

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John Ruggero
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Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by John Ruggero »

Scarlatti Sonata K. 1 My edition and the first edition appear after the commentary.

Commentary:

m. 1 The centered beams in both hands make it clearer that the notes with up stems are lower voices. A very similar situation and notation occurs at the beginning of J. S. Bach’s Invention no. 4 in the same key:
JS Bach Invention 4.png
JS Bach Invention 4.png (32.41 KiB) Viewed 1000 times
m. 2-5 etc. Stopping the trills before the end of the beat preserves the rhythmic effect of the tied notes and the final suspension.

ms. 3-6 and 23-26 Double stemming the left-hand part aids in following the movement of the voices. It was not possible to maintain double-stemming throughout as in the first edition.

m. 8-9 There are two harmonies under the melody note A: d minor and g minor, i-iv in D minor. The upper voices are suspended to form a ninth chord over the g minor triad before they resolve to the following A7. The melody of the half measure, A-G, is repeated A-G, A-G before it finds its complete resolution as A-G-F over the D minor chord in m. 10. Thus the D minor triads under the A’s are not the resolutions of the A7 chords that precede them.
Scarlatti K 1 m 8-10 analysis.png
Scarlatti K 1 m 8-10 analysis.png (150.08 KiB) Viewed 1000 times
This type of passage must have intrigued Brahms, who was Scarlatti enthusiast. Here are similar harmonies and suspensions formed by chains of thirds from his Piano Piece op. 119 no. 1:
Brahms op 119 n 1.png
Brahms op 119 n 1.png (156.91 KiB) Viewed 1000 times
Because the A is suspended and resolves to the G, anticipated connective trills seem better to me than a down beat trills, which would tend to emphasize the note of resolution G. Continuous trills (and possibly even after-beats) on the G’s seem out-of-place to me because the repetition and interruptions of the half measures prevent the G from resolving until m. 10. It is also clear from m. 12 that Scarlatti writes out trill afterbeats.

m. 10 The centered beam shows the phrasing.

m. 12 The A discussed in footnote 5 is best sustained to match the sustained left-hand A in the ending cadence, and to clarify that the following note E is an inner voice that starts the codetta. Similarly in m. 30.
Attachments
Scarlatti K. 1 unfingered.pdf
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Scarlatti K. 1 (revised).pdf
(310.97 KiB) Downloaded 20 times
Scarlatti K. 1.pdf
(221.36 KiB) Downloaded 58 times
Scarlatti Sonata K 1 1st ed.pdf
(186.48 KiB) Downloaded 40 times
Last edited by John Ruggero on 06 Oct 2022, 13:25, edited 7 times in total.
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benwiggy
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by benwiggy »

John Ruggero wrote:
14 Aug 2022, 14:56
Scarlatti Sonata K. 1 My edition and the first edition appear after the commentary.

Thank you for this, John. Your beams seem to be 'darker' than most (which works very well): are they different?

I've recently bought a sample library of a 1738 Harpsichord, and I've just played it through on that; it sounds lovely!

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John Ruggero
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by John Ruggero »

Thanks, Ben. I'm glad you enjoyed playing it on your new "harpsichord". It was designed as an example of the kind of practical yet authentic edition that I think is needed for Scarlatti's sonatas.

You have a great eye. Somewhere along the way I must have set it to 14 EVPSs and I can't remember why! My style sheet has 12.5. Glad you like the look.
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NeeraWM
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by NeeraWM »

Very nice engraving, John!
I admit being a "beam design freak" but I would improve on many of them, if you want I could send you a marked-up version.
A few engraving realisation questions:
1. did you use Dorico's local frames to realise the musical annotation at the bottom or something like Illustrator/InDesign?
2. how did you realise the fingering in bar 17?
3. personal taste: the clef at the beginning of each system is too far from the initial barline. I'd nudge it 0.5sp to the left generally.

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John Ruggero
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by John Ruggero »

Thank you very much, NerraWM. I appreciate that. Yes please send me the marked up version and thank you for going through it so carefully. We have been discussing beam angles here since the beginning of Notat.io, as you know, so I am very interested in your ideas on the subject. Theoretically I try to place the beams on the staff lines whenever possible so as not to create needless triangles, but also let them follow the general course of the melodies, the latter being much more of a priority than the former. I must confess also that after seeing so much variation in fine engraving of the past and being also very aware of the average life span in the USA, it doesn't always get my utmost attention.

Answers

1.The file was done with the Text Tool with imported PDF's for the examples in Finale. I have used InDesign when there are extensive footnotes throughout an edition, but for simplicity stick to Finale as much as possible. I know that Dorico has a more elegant way to handle this, but the system I use is very simple and quick. The only problem I have is that FInale's text tool does not always do perfect justification and tracking adjustments are sometimes necessary.

2. The fingering in my editions is one of its main features and the result of very careful consideration at the keyboard. This piece has more challenging fingering problems than many Scarlatti's sonatas, in particular the several passages like the one in m. 17. Since the hands interlock, the thumb is avoided so that the left hand can play in between the black keys and thus get out of the way of the right hand. Since the second and third fingers are the most adept and the passage is in rhythmic groups of two, one is really left with only one possibility: 32 32 etc. The right hand fingering is based on what would be used for a series of unbroken thirds. Such passages are best played keeping as many thirds as possible within a single hand position. This means segments of 12 13 24 35 (and even 45) and 13 24 35, that one sees in Chopin's own fingering, rather than the pairs 13 24 13 24 etc. that one sees in many older editions. The actual layout of these groups is determined by the combinations of white and black keys, that is, the pairs of 2 whites, 2 black, black-white, or white-black each of which has bad, good, better, and best fingering combinations. For example, black on the bottom and white on top is best played with 24 or 35, not 12 or 13 etc.

3. I agree with you completely and am now seriously considering changing this. It is set to the Finale default of 1 space, which is really pointless and uses up space needlessly. While I don't care for the clefs being as close to the left bar line as one sometimes sees, I think .6 space would be much better. Thank you for calling this to my attention!
Last edited by John Ruggero on 25 Sep 2022, 22:32, edited 1 time in total.
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NeeraWM
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by NeeraWM »

My pleasure, John, and thanks to you for the detailed answer.
This score is very detailed and carefully crafted, an impressive job overall!
I will never tire to underline that I am a beam-angle freak, it helps avoiding the "beam fanatic" label :-)
I have attached below the annotated version. I've been proofreading like this my editions since 2018 but, as I'm now offering this as a service to others as well, I took this as an exercise to see where I could push myself. Please: every annotation has the "in my opinion" mark attached to it, all of it is a positive remark, not a critique.
I hope my handwriting is decipherable!
In the top right I've added a small legend. There is also a green arrow which should be a sticky note with a longer comment in it. I am amazed that Finale can create a tie which is flipped at different ends of a system!
Many beams are not straight when I think they should be, but I know how much Finale makes this difficult to accomplish.
Fingerings are often too near the beam for my taste.

Now that I think of it, my cello teacher used to tell me "now we use Scarlatti fingerings" when, in practicing 3rd-4th octave of a 4-octave scale, we used 13-12-12-12-12-12-123, the only fingering that allows for the greatest speed. I digress, but this was first introduced by Dotzauer in the 1830s, who was a good pianist/organist before switching to cello.
The spacing between barline-clef-key signature-time signature looks too big in the first system, while from the second onward the space between clef and flat gives me peace! May be because of the fullness of the different systems.

Let me know what you think and thank you for letting me practice on your score!

PS: do you know why the login duration is so short in the forum? I have now learned to copy the text of any message I'm writing because of fear of being logged out. Upon a new login the text and the attachments are gone, every time.
Attachments
Scarlatti K. 1 (annotated).pdf
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John Ruggero
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by John Ruggero »

Thanks, Neera. For the most part, we are just operating on different principles of beaming, beam angles and editing.

As I said, I go my own way and allow the beam to reflect the motion of the notes more than a lot of engravers do, particularly these days. So if a set of notes is going up, I think that the beam should reflect that even if only a little. Sometimes the same set of notes can mean different things. For example, the combination CBDC might mean a C being decorated by two neighboring notes and thus be stationary. In this case, the beams would be level. However, it might also be part of a rising sequence such as CBDC EDFE. in which case I would use a slightly slanted beam while still trying to avoid triangles as much as possible.

I try to retain all centered beaming in my editions because much of it brings out the multi-voice character of the music and sometimes even hidden relationships in the music. I mentioned this in the commentary. And its a slippery slope, once one has started modernizing the text, it becomes hard to draw the line where to and where not to. So I avoid modernization as much as possible while still trying to avoid reading difficulties for the player. This sometimes creates difficult, but also interesting engraving issues to solve. But my priority is not to follow engraving rules at all costs but to express what I think the composer is trying to communicate.

Concerning the fingering. The fingering you gave would also be a fine fingering and one that I did consider. However, fingerings of this type tend to give a mechanical quality to the phrasing because of a lack of overall grouping by the arm, so I would use it only for brilliant effects, as for example where Beethoven specifies this fingering in the slow movement of his Sonata op. 31 no 1. It would also be fine in many of Scarlatti's sonatas for the same reason. However, I consider this sonata to be more on the expressive side and deserving of sensitive phrasing.

I had noticed the noticeably out of alignment fingering in m. 8 but failed to correct it. Every fingering is placed by hand and alignment is very time consuming, which is one reason I would move to Dorico. Unfortunately, Dorico is still unable to do both hyphens and elisions in fingering and other related things.

I also now notice that I need to correct a change of tie direction at the beginning of m. 6. Finale does this sometimes and one has to stay vigilant. And you are right, the space between the beam and staff line in m. 4 should be avoided, which is easy enough in this case.

Yes, some of the fingering is too close to the beams and closer than I normally place it. I am having an issue with Finale 27 in which fingering is moving out of position when older files are opened and also when PDFs are involved. I first noticed this when I first posted the Scarlatti and saw with horror that all of the fingering had been moved wildly out of position. I then tried another approach to making the PDF and it was much better, but there seem to be remaining issues. MakeMusic has not been able to help with this and I have given up using Finale 27 for this reason. Eventually, I will need to modify this file in Finale 25.5.

You have a good point about the opening barline, clef, key signature, and time signature spacing. They are all adhering to Finale defaults, but definitely something that I need to reconsider. The stem lengths for the higher notes were determined by the application of "Patterson beams" which changes the Finale defaults. You indicate that you think that the stems are too short. Possibly.

The elision mark in m. 12 is a special indication that the note may be held beyond its length and through the following notes. It doesn't show a finger substitution. There is explanation in the commentary and the footnotes.

In any case, thank very much for looking it over, you have a great eye for music engraving and spotted some things that I will definitely correct.
Last edited by John Ruggero on 25 Sep 2022, 15:18, edited 3 times in total.
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NeeraWM
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by NeeraWM »

John Ruggero wrote:
25 Sep 2022, 13:37
As I said, I go my own way and to allow the beam to reflect the motion of the notes more than a lot of engravers do, particularly these days. So if a set of notes is going up, I think that the beam should reflect that even if only a little. Sometimes the same set of notes can mean different things. For example, the combination CBDC might mean a C being decorated by two neighboring notes and thus be stationary. In this case, the beams would be level. However, it might also be part of a rising sequence such as CBDC EDFE. in which case I would use a slightly slanted beam while still trying to avoid triangles as much as possible.
Wow!
This is possibly the most interesting, fascinating, and inspiring process I have read in a very, very long time!
Thank you!

It was my pleasure to analyse your engraving, I learned a lot!

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John Ruggero
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by John Ruggero »

So did I! That is one of the beauties of Notat.io. Please keep posting and commenting.
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Re: Edition of Scarlatti K. 1

Post by JJP »

Thank you to both of you for allowing the rest of us to follow this thoughtful conversation!
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