Monday, August 26, 2013

Watch Out!

Schumann's Album for the Young is a brilliant treatise on how music works at the piano, presented in small forms with the utmost precision as to articulations, phrasing, etc.

Then an editor gets hold of it, puts his name on it, collects royalties.  For what?

For misusing such words as Moderato (one of my favorites, remember?) for Melodie, where Schumann has indicated a clear and decisive nothing as a tempo marking.  This absence of a directive can only mean what my teacher, Hans Neumann, used to call "watch out!" or "pay attention." 

As if that weren't enough the editor in question proceeds to change articulations, fully distorting the truly waggish (schalkhaft) originals in the Sizilianisch

Watch out!

(Actually that is a quote from a great Schumann lied: "Huete dich!  Sei wach und munter!"