Johannes Brahms: Handel Variations
Contents – Handel Variations for piano op. 24
Johannes Brahms showed an interest in the music of previous epochs at an early age. In this context, he also came across the variation theme of George Frideric Handel which, in turn, inspired him to write an extensive work of variations for the piano. The new edition of the Wiener Urtext Edition is based on a meticulous comparison of autographs, first edition and personal copies. Brahms's autograph copy served as an essential corrective; subsequent corrections of the composer in the personal copy of Max Kalbeck were taken into account as well. Changes in tempo and indications of expression of Brahms's first manuscript version until the first edition allow conclusions about the composer's interpretational ideas; they are analysed in the notes of interpretation. The clear and readily legible engraving makes this edition a convenient basis for studying this masterpiece.
The meticulous background research and new discoveries here are the revelatory. It is wonderful to have Clara Schumann's own fingerings in italics throughout the score (she gave the first performance in September 1861) and useful, too - in Peter Roggenkamp's interpretive notes - to have detailed and logically argued cases made for approaching trills on the main note rather than on the note above. Roggenkamp is excellent in advocation the sostenuto and half-pedalling for variations nine and 22 respectively, as well as helpful in his explanation of the direction ‚sciolto' that appears in the 14th variation. As for Brahms' notes themselves, they are beautifully engraved and generously laid out over 30 pages. With a detailed critical commentary explaining editorial decisions, this is a very impressive package indeed.
International Piano 07,08/2011
One may wonder what another edition of Brahms's Handel-Variations Op. 24, might add, especially considering that all the important sources hand long been available. Yet, the 2011 Wiener Urtext Edition (...) does make a significant contribution. Compared with the seven other editions I reviewed, (...) I found this 30-page edition easier to read than previous 22- to 27-page versions. Its convenient page-turns occur only between variations. Even unavoidable pageturns in the Fugue are at relatively convenient spots. (...) I found the fingering musically and technically sound, and I particularly appreciate the instances in which redistribution notes between the hands makes some passages easier for smaller hands (…) This edition is user-friendly in its layout and design. It provides a wealth of information, detailing even small discrepancies between sources in the "Critical Notes", enabling anyone who studies this work to make educated decisions.
The American Music Teacher, 04/2012
Édité d' après les textes originaux par Christa Landon, ce troisième volume qui comprend les Sonates Hob XVI:21 à 30 de Haydn est précieux à plus d'un titre. Non seulement l'impression est parfaite, mais la présentation des œuvres et les annexes sont remarquables. (…) Ce volume est la parfaite illustration d'un travail musicologique approfondi. Un tel recueil donne envie de se plonger dans l'univers sonore de Haydn.
Pianiste Nr. 69, Jul/Aug 2011
- for piano
- Edition type:
- urtext edition
- Brahms Johannes
- Wiener Urtext Edition
- Wiener Urtext Edition
- op. 24