Henle or Barenreiter - Bach Double

November 21, 2005 at 01:53 AM · If you had a choice between the Barenreiter Edition (Kilian) or the Henle Edition (Eppstein-Gunter) of the Bach Double Concerto; which would you go for?

Or would you go for something else like IMC (Galamian)?

Replies (12)

November 21, 2005 at 01:42 PM · I would go with Barenreiter. It is usually an unedited urtext (i.e., exactly as the composer wrote the piece with no added or changed bowings or dynamics). Henle's urtext is usually more expensive and is edited (although the editor will usually show what is original and what is added). Galamian's IMC, while cheaper, will also be edited.

November 21, 2005 at 02:41 PM · Here is the link for the Henle edition:


And here is the link for the Barenreiter:


The Barenreiter website specifically mentions that their publication is an "urtext edition." There is no such mention on the Henle website, but every Henle part I've ever owned has included both the unedited urtext and an edited part, usually with period bowings, articulations, and fingerings. (This goes for Barenreiter also.) And considering that Henle only concerns itself with authentic editions anyway, I'd say it's a good bet that you'll end up with an unedited urtext part with them as well. Even if they don't have the urtext, you can be sure that their edited edition was taken directly from the urtext. Both publishers adhere to very high standards of documentation and research in making their editions (which contributes to their high cost). I would recommend either one over IMC, especially if you're trying to play it in period style and/or on period instruments. From there, it's a matter of your own taste in fingerings and bowings. Good luck!

November 21, 2005 at 04:36 PM · Nick -- I have never seen a Henle with an unedited urtext version of a piece. And, all of the Barenreiters I have seen are unedited. You probably have more experience than I do with these editions, but I am curious.

November 22, 2005 at 06:17 PM · Tom - I think some Henle editions have an unedited urtext and some do not. The Henle Bach Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin has an unedited urtext along with the edited part, but my Saint-Saens b minor concerto just has the edited part. As for Barenreiter - it may be the same deal. My Barenreiter Mozart #5 has an unedited urtext and an edited part. So I guess we're both right :)

November 22, 2005 at 08:02 PM · I have no idea why I said "every Henle part I've ever owned had an urtext part" when I have the Saint-Saens right here with me and it doesn't have an urtext. Sorry about that, I was tired


November 22, 2005 at 07:01 PM · Nick -- maybe you were sold a defective copy of the Saint-Saens? Or you lost the urtext part?

November 23, 2005 at 12:32 AM · Even if the music has been added with fingerings and suggested phrasing, it doesn't affect its status of being Urtext, as they are only suggestions made by the editor. As long as there isn't any "new" notes added onto the music by a different people, such as the editor, the edition should still be considered in urtext.

Both Barenreiter and Henle publish all their music in urtext, whether there is an extra copy with no fingerings/phrasing, that's another point.

Personally I will go for the Barenreiter, because I just love their covers.

By the way, has anyone tried the first version of Mendelssohn E minor, published by Barenreiter a few months ago, yet?

November 23, 2005 at 10:58 AM · Thanks, Well another consideration is preference of editors. Barenreiter Edition (Kilian) and the Henle Edition (Eppstein-Gunter). I'm not really familiar with Kilian, Eppstein or Gunter so I was wondering if people have preferences.

For the Bach Solo Sonatas/Partitas, I used Galamian; I like his choices fingerings and bowings. The Bach has his original manuscript copy in the back. But I'm afraid that the IMC Galamian of the Bach Double will not have the original, so I can't tell which is Galamian and which is not.

November 23, 2005 at 02:48 PM · The point about edited vs. unedited urtexts is a good one. Barenreiter urtexts tend to be unedited, be of better quality in terms of durabitlity, and sit better on your stand, so I prefer them. Unfortunately, Barenreiter for some reason does not do Beethoven's violin concerto (although Schott puts out an unedited urtext of the violin part).

I never much cared for Galamian's edits of the solo Bach. Some of the bowings caused me to look at the manuscript because I did not like them and found that the manuscript contained a different bowing. My preference is for the Szeryng edited version put out by Schott, which, although not advertised as such, is, in fact, an edited urtext, since Szeryng distinguishes between original version and his edits. I would buy the Galamian simply to get a copy of the manuscript (unless there is a cheaper way to get it) and ignore the actual music. Better to get Barenreiter or Schott's Szeryng edition.

November 23, 2005 at 02:08 PM · Or else, go for the facsimile of the Bach Double, there you have an absoulte urtext edition.

November 23, 2005 at 11:18 PM · The original question was: "If you had a choice between the Barenreiter Edition (Kilian) or the Henle Edition (Eppstein-Gunter) of the Bach Double Concerto; which would you go for?"

I would go with the edition with the *least* amount of markings in Bach like the Barenreiter or just buy a score and enlarge it. Henle tries to pass itself off as a urtext edition but has bad editors who put ignorant bowings and fingerings in. Plus Henle costs too much.

November 23, 2005 at 10:45 PM · I like Peter's Edition for almost everything.

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