Why the cuts on Bruch´s Scottish Fantasy, last movement?

August 8, 2004 at 06:47 AM · Bruch dedicated this work to Pablo de Sarasate. The Premiere was made by Joachim in 1881.

Heifetz recording have some cuts, and many others...pasting in different places, but always cuting the triplets variation section. Many violinists do the same. Other recordings shows no cuts.

Does any one knows where the cuts come from and why?


Replies (14)

August 8, 2004 at 08:54 AM · Well, I knew only the bruch scottisch from Heifetz, so I didn't even know that I DID make cuts. A few years after, I heard a Perlman recording WITHOUT the cuts and I can tell you that I prefer the work (especially the last movement) 10 times more WITH the cuts

August 8, 2004 at 11:08 AM · I guess the cuts are made because the full "uncut" version is a bit repetitive - the same stuff in different keys rather than new themes or statements. In my opinion it doesn't really add much to the piece as a whole and in fact, like you, Bob, I think Heifetz improved it considerably. That's the recording for me - every time.......

August 8, 2004 at 03:51 PM · The Heifetz cuts definitely streamline the last movement, which does get long-winded. Bruch suffered from diarrhea of the pen sometimes, and this is a case where a little editing goes a long way in helping the piece.

August 9, 2004 at 02:35 AM · *dies laughing* Haha, lately, I've been thinking Mendelssohn suffers from the same condition......

September 2, 2004 at 05:39 AM · Composer's are not always the best judge (or interpreters) or their own work.

My violin teacher, Roy Malan, is the author of "Efrem Zimbalist: A Life," and one story he tells is of when the great violinist played this work, with cuts, in front of the composer himself. Bruch congratulated him and said, "your cuts were an improvement." If cuts were authorized by the composer, why not if it makes the piece more cogent and less repetitive?

September 7, 2004 at 02:26 PM · I noticed that too about the Heifetz recording.I dont know why he does that, but hey, it doesnt matter.

September 7, 2004 at 02:54 PM · I think it makes the last movement of the Scottish Fantasy a lot better with cuts. Same could be said about the last movement of the Tchaikovsky concerto.

September 8, 2004 at 04:55 PM · haha michael "diarrhea of the pen" :)

September 17, 2004 at 11:42 PM · No I reckon the uncut Tchaik is better. Those semiquaver passages really add a feeling of building tension and add to the agitated breathless mood of the movement.

September 18, 2004 at 03:21 AM · One thing that Heifetz told my teacher about the Tchaikovsky concerto was that Tchaikovsky himself actually did approve and more importantly liked Auer's revisions quite a bit. I can't personally think of a great performance of this piece without the Auer version.

September 19, 2004 at 12:35 AM · Which version of the piece has the cuts? I have Zimbalist, and it doesn't. If there is none, does anyone have an edited copy?

September 20, 2004 at 05:22 AM · None of the editions for the Bruch have the cuts, just add them from the JH recording.

September 20, 2004 at 09:28 AM · Interesting...

But, ultimately, doesn't the performance rest in the hands of a conductor, especially when the composer if a work is no longer alive to tell us first hand? Just thinking, but isn't it true that many times in performance, there may have to be collaboration?

Too bad Bruch isn't still alive! :) But I have a question...If he liked the cuts, why wouldn't he revise the original copy? Perhaps I might answer my own question by saying that publication may not allow the ease of revision in the past. What are your thoughts on this? I too am most interested too. :D

March 24, 2005 at 03:53 AM · Hi there...I appreciate all your responses of last year. I agree with thouse who consider this work is better with the cuts, but I still don´t have a concrete answer...Are the cuts performed by tradition, is there any heavy reason (besides the one "it sounds better" to perform the work with the cuts? ...Thank you!

This discussion has been archived and is no longer accepting responses.

Facebook Twitter YouTube Instagram Email

Violinist.com is made possible by...

Shar Music
Shar Music

Pirastro Strings
Pirastro Strings

JR Judd Violins
JR Judd Violins

Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases
Dimitri Musafia, Master Maker of Violin and Viola Cases

2023 Authenticate LA: Los Angeles Violin Shop
2023 Authenticate LA

Violinist.com Shopping Guide
Violinist.com Shopping Guide


Metzler Violin Shop

Southwest Strings

Bobelock Cases

Johnson String Instrument/Carriage House Violins

Jargar Strings

Bay Fine Strings Violin Shop



Los Angeles Violin Shop


String Masters

Nazareth Gevorkian Violins

Laurie's Books

Discover the best of Violinist.com in these collections of editor Laurie Niles' exclusive interviews.

Violinist.com Interviews Volume 1
Violinist.com Interviews Volume 1, with introduction by Hilary Hahn

Violinist.com Interviews Volume 2
Violinist.com Interviews Volume 2, with introduction by Rachel Barton Pine