Ornamentation in Baroque and Post-Baroque Musicby Frederick Neumann

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  • Ornamentation in Baroque and Post-Baroque Music by Frederick NeumannReview by: Sven HansellFontes Artis Musicae, Vol. 27, No. 3/4 (Juli-Dezember 1980), pp. 233-236Published by: International Association of Music Libraries, Archives, and Documentation Centres(IAML)Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/23505917 .Accessed: 15/06/2014 18:28

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  • Comptes-R endus/Besprechungen /R eviews 233

    mnage des surprises mme avec le plan tradition

    nel, tantt dconcertantes (orgue sur pattes de

    poule de St-Sauveur de Horsens, Frobenius 1977, p. 74/6) ou dcevantes (Islevk. de Copenhague, Fro. 71, p. 164) ou fort belles au moins en photo (N.D. de Nyborg, Andersen 1978, p. 258).

    De la masse des compositions d'orgues d'o

    on pourrait tirer une tude srieuse de la facture

    danoise contemporaine au moins dans ses pro

    grammes, ressort, aprs ce retour au baroque allemand, une priode rcente de recherches vers

    d'autres types (Cornets, Chamades . . .) chez

    B. Christensen, Carsten Lund, Poul Andersen

    surtout. Un Bruhn va jusqu' sparer sur deux

    claviers un Plein-Jeu et un Grand-Jeu dit Bom

    bardenwerk (sans Bombarde vu la taille de

    l'instrument), avec un Echo la Pierre Thierry et des noms franais (Karlebo, Nivakirke 1979,

    p. 84). En mme temps on devine des efforts

    pour conserver ou plutt ramener a leur type

    d'origine quelques orgues du XIXe sicle ou mme

    plus anciens (Trinit de Copenhague 1731).

    L'aspect document brut de ce livre,

    quoique non spcialement fait pour cela, est un

    appel l'tudiant en qute de thse, mais aussi

    l'amateur qui voudrait aller entendre sur place sans s'garer.

    Pierre Hardouin

    Theophil Antonicek: Anton Bruckner und

    die Wiener Hofmusikkapelle (Graz: Akademische

    Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, 1979). 167 S. 8

    (Anton Bruckner. Dokumente und Studien. Hrsg. von Franz Grasberger. Band 1).

    Erst sehr spt ist Anton Bruckner zu "insti

    tutionellen" Ehren gekommen: 1978 grndete die Stadt Linz, die Kommission fr Musikfor

    schung der sterreichischen Akademie der Wis

    senschaften und das Linzer Brucknerhaus ein

    Anton-Bruckner-Institut", das in der ober

    sterreichischen Hauptstadt Linz seinen festen

    Sitz hat. Durch die Grndung dieses Institutes

    soll die Brucknerforschung in der Heimat des

    Komponisten ein neues Zentrum bekommen, neue Akzente fr biographische und systemati sche Forschung sollen gesetzt werden. Die Grund

    lagenforschung will mit einer Bibliographie, Iko

    nographie, Diskographie sowie einer Zeitungsdo kumentation aufwarten. Aber auch spezielle Themen sollen behandelt werden, so die in Vor

    bereitung befindlichen Arbeiten von Elisabeth

    Maier und Franz Zamazal (Anton Bruckners musi

    kalische Entwicklung in den Jahren 1843-1855

    und seine Studien hei Leopold von Zenetti), von

    Claudia Rthig (Anton Bruckners erste Sympho

    nie) und ein Sammelband verschiedener Autoren

    (Anton Bruckners Erscheinung im sozialen Ge

    fiige seiner Zeit). Der von dem Wiener Privatdo

    zenten und Oberkommissr der Kommission fr

    Musikforschung der sterreichischen Akademie

    der Wissenschaften Theophil Antonicek vorge

    legte erste Band der Bruckner-Studien liefert Bau

    steine zu einem neuen Bruckner-Bild. Antonicek

    stellt die amtlichen Fakten in ihren historischen

    Kontext, punktuellesjaephemeresbekommt viel fach einen anderen Stellenwert. Ziel Bruckners

    war das Amt des Hofkapellmeisters, aus verschie denen Grnden, vor allem weil Bruckner sich als

    Komponist von Symphonien ausgab und weil er

    wenig geistige und soziale Frderung erfuhr, konnte er diese hchste musikalische Position in

    Wien nicht erreichen. Die 76 Quellen, die Antoni

    cek abdruckt, stammen vornehmlich aus den Be

    stnden des Obersthofmeisteramtes und der Hof

    musikkapelle des Wiener Haus-, Hof- und Staats archives ; ergnzt wurden sie durch Stcke anderer

    Sammlungen. Philologische Akribie und eine

    immense Literaturkenntnis zeichnen Antoniceks Arbeit aus. Das im Druck eineinhalb Seiten um fassende Aufnahmegesuch vom 14. Oktober 1867 kommentiert der Herausgeber mit elf Seiten. Der

    Leser bekommt somit nicht nur ein Aktenstck

    serviert, sondern er sieht, wie das Schriftstck in

    Bruckners Vita eingebettet wird, wie bedeutend es fr die Entwicklung des Komponisten wird. Ntzliche Statistiken bieten die Anhnge I und II. Anhang I erfat die Bruckner-Auffhrungen in

    der Hofmusikkapelle bis zum Ende des Hofrars,

    Anhang II vergleicht die Auffhrungszahlen von

    Kompositionen von Mitgliedern der Hofmusik

    kapelle in der Hofkapelle whrend Bruckners

    Ttigkeit in der Hofmusikkapelle (1867-1896). Zwlf anschauliche Abbildungen und ein Per

    sonenregister ergnzen die Studien. Antonicek ist

    mit seinem Buch auf dem besten Wege, der Deutsch der Bruckner-Forschung zu werden.

    Rudolph Angermller

    Frederick Neumann: Ornamentation in

    Baroque and Post-Baroque Music (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1978). xiv, 630 p. Clothbound. $50.00.

    Presenting a tresn iook at tne documentation

    of the Baroque and Post-Baroque eras, Neumann

    convincingly argues that the central core of

    doctrine about musical performance taught by

    20th-century books on ornamentation involves a

    20th-century myth. By means of an impressive collection of passages taken from music of differ

    ent countries and periods, he makes the point over and again that many French ornaments

    (especially those in keyboard works of the later

    17th and early 18th centuries), not so few Ger

    man and occasional Italian ones, too, should

    begin before rather than on the beat. The techni

    cal necessity and musical beauty of executing

    some so-called "small notes" early and starting

    certain clusters of notes indicated by symbols as

    upbeat or pre-beat ornaments is established with

    such thoroughness, that attempts today to per

    petuate the all-too-familiar on-beat and accented

    performance of every melodic decoration may

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  • 234 Comptes-Rendus /Besprechungen ! Reviews

    finally be recognized for what they are: 20th- Prelude in B Minor for organ (B.W.V. 544) century misunderstandings that fail to recognize should be played with short appoggiaturas, in the available variety of performance possibilities fact, of such "extreme shortness that in absence in different repertories and, worse yet, that over- of a distinct beat in another voice [their brevity] look the pre-beat start as a rhythmic device makes on-or pre-beat placement indistinguishable promoting the flow and the grace of much music. on the organ" (p. 145); even the most casual The hundreds of musical passages - an enormous listener cannot fail to notice the different shape compilation of rhythmic configurations, includ- that quick appoggiaturas will give the prelude's ing oft-disputed moments in well-known master- opening measures.

    pieces - serve Neumann not only to combat the Despite the reluctance to applaud Neumann's accumulated errors of some 20th-century "au- book that some players may therefore show, thorities", but to let us see a significant portion scholars will wish to hail his breaking down of of the vast wealth of material which Neumann barriers erected by fallacious 20th-century inter sifted through in preparing this remarkable tome. pretations and his correctly analyzing many musi Handsomely produced on large pages with wide Cal passages; but something, nonetheless, must be margins (for the reader's own comments?), foot- said about those observations, usually linked to notes easily located at the bottoms of pages and, subjective opinion, which will not help performers at the end, an excellent glossary of terms and solve for themselves certain rhythmic problems symbols, a bibliography and an index, this even if they seem to recur in various similar volume demonstrates how fine an American works. In fact, the French repertory of the late study can be when a university press spares no 17th and early 18th centuries, of central impor pains in layout and execution. tance to a full understanding of German and later

    Of course, the serious student will appreciate French works, too, is not as thorougly investi most Neumann's excellent scholarship in dealing gated as one would expect, given Neumann's with the above-mentioned rhythmic problems; careful examination of so many scores and trea but he will also be grateful for Neumann's at- tises. For better or worse, this book ultimately tempts to relate different schools of music and raises the question as to why French music of the

    specific individuals to one another. Thus, C.P.E. late 17th and early 18th century does not seem Bach emerges as a fascinating individual who, to involve ornaments that are logically regulated quite atypically, tried "in defiance of widespread in such a way that their use may be explained in

    practices . . . and of musical nature itself" (p. 199) terms of a consistent system. In other words, is to introduce certain practices in ornamentation Neumann's frequent reliance on subjective that were adopted by only a few subsequent opinion as well as his need to consider harmony theorists at the end of the 18th century. Other and other variables with each individual ornament

    comparisons Neumann makes reveal his careful an indication of his inability to say why and/or reading of that age's most celebrated treatises. when a particular class of French ornaments For instance, Leopold Mozart's debt to Tartini should be played pre-beat, on-beat, linked to and Quantz' partial reliance on French sources gether, or otherwise handled? is identified briefly yet with illuminating com- It is this reviewer's considered opinion that ments. Neumann failed to recognize categories of rhythm

    Just as admirable is Neumann's inclusion of that could serve both as a practical aid to players his own opinions. Disclosing his practical back- and as an analytical tool to theoreticians by ground as a musician - for years Neumann was limiting himself to an examination of ornaments active as violinist, conductor and violin peda- in isolation: ornaments divorced from that aspect gogue - his subjective statements supplement of rhythmic organization which regulates the documentation of many kinds. He points out, character of those notes embellished by the small for example, that Bach's E-flat Prelude from the notes and bearing the symbols for note-clusters. Well Tempered Clavier, Book II, thanks to its Near total is his neglect of the practice of notes

    lively character and its driving energy, should not ingales - there is no chapter on the notion of be decorated with long appoggiaturas or long pairing notes, not even an entry in the index; and

    "sighs" (p. 152). The best performance of the when he finally writes "mordents do not seem to small notes in this gigue-like prelude should be mix readily with notes ingales" (p. 422), he on-the-beat and very quick, he argues while reveals that he only recognizes one type of notes

    considering other rhythmic values for the small ingales, viz., the pairing of notes strong-weak, notes in question. Probably many keyboard and not the more usual form of late 17th-century players will resist the task of relearning works inequality: pairing notes weak-strong. These two

    '(already committed to memory?) and admitting types are presented with musical examples in that their recordings are anachronisms. But treatises that Neumann cites, like Jacques Hotte

    audiences, too, will have difficulties adjusting terre le Romain's celebrated Principes de la flte to unfamiliar rhythms: some of Neumann's traversire ...(Paris 1707 and numerous reprint suggestions indicate radical changes to well- ings). Abstracted here from several examples known pieces. For example, one reads that Bach's that Hotteterre and others give, the two types

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  • France

    tu ru tu ru tu ru tu

    18th century

    j rj ry j tu tu ru tu ru tu

    Comptes-Rendus/Besprechungen /Reviews 235

    are shown below (along with the tu ru articula- the beat (and therefore compatible with the tion syllables which Hotteterre taught): pattern of notes ingales of "Type 2").

    , _ , It may seem unjust to criticize Neumann for

    LyPl mSt COmmn m 17th-ccntury ignoring the mordents, trills, one-note graces and

    other ornaments duplicating or at least closely resembling those of the Baroque and Post-Ba

    roque periods as they exist in some folk music

    repertories - for instance, in that of the tradi tional polkas and other ltar played by Swedish folk fiddlers of the present day. After all, it is not the fashion among scholars, let alone the expecta

    Type 2: also used in 17th-century France but tion of Perfrmers, to seek connections between

    most common there after the first quarter of the East West or

    be]wLeen folk music of the Pre"

    sent and art music of the past. And yet, a cursory examination of the Swedish repertory's ornamen tation discloses how it may be regulated by the above-cited two basic varieties of notes ingales and how these two and others may be freely altered by rubato playing (as well as something reminiscent of the quick arpeggiation of chords,

    Questions regarding the metrical position of so idiomatic of the harpsichord), making the

    ornaments like the mordent are not 'left in entire problem of pre-beat versus on-beat per

    doubt", as Neumann would sometimes have us formance a theoretical rather than practical one.

    believe (p. 424), except for the fact that his musi- Certainly, no one could reasonably require Neu

    cal examples are often too brief to let us deter- mann to have included all aspects of music

    mine the metrical level on which notes ingales impinging, however remotely, on problems of

    should be functioning. The question whet...

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