Sunday, June 10, 2012

The Telemann F minor sonata

I've been working on the F minor sonata for awhile now, and got a chance to perform it today. I started working on it because Thom Zantow's site gave it a good review, and because it seemed a little easier than the Fasch, which I'd worked on a bit but the technical bits never came together. I worked off an IMSLP version, but I since I had a performance coming up,  I figured I needed to put my hands on a professional paper edition with a realized bass. I bought the International edition, edited by Simon Kovar. Kovar is a famous guy, so I figured he might have some useful ideas with respect to articulations and ornaments too. I also found an edition from the Swiss publisher Amadeus, edited by Winfried Michel. When my International edition finally arrived, I was dismayed to discover that Kovar had changed lots of notes from the original, mostly taking out big leaps, and had filled the part with slurs. Looking over it with my teacher, he pointed out that it was published in 1949, which is before the "historically informed performance" movement started. So basically, it was a Romantic interpretation of a Baroque piece. Hmph. The piano part also looked a little thick. The Amadeus edition, on the other hand, looked very much like the original, and in fact very much like the IMSLP edition I'd worked on.

The editor of the Amadeus edition had a few remarks about the piece. He called it the first serious piece in the bassoon repertoire; apparently before this the bassoon had been thought of as a supporting player in the continuo, or the comic character, "clown of the orchestra" role. But with this piece, Telemann started with a slow movement, marked Triste, and set the piece in a serious key, F minor. I have no idea if any of this stuff is true, but it gave me something to say while I was getting myself set up.

My performance today was at a student oboe recital that I crashed. I'll play it again next week, at a bassoon event. I gave the pianist for today's event a free choice of editions to play off of, when we had our run through this morning. She picked the IMSLP version, so she could realize the continuo herself, in real time. She did a great job, and the whole thing went pretty well, I thought. Lot of notes though. It was my first time playing all of anything, and I'm not used to having to play so long in one stretch. Let me know what you think; I have a week before the next show.

No comments:

Post a Comment