There are some fascinating blogs dealing with musical notation. The one that has interested me most (because it comes from practical experience completely different from my own) is Hollywood conductor and orchestrator Tim Davies’s blog Debreved (http://www.debreved.com/). Although his focus is very different from mine, we share a similar interest in the nit-picky details of the niceties of notation.
The closest thing I’ve run across to doing what I’m interested in doing with this blog is one done by some of the house editors at the music publisher Henle:
Their blog is (rightly) devoted to selling their wares, but they regularly have interesting things to say.
The most prominent publisher of scholarly editions for a wide market otherwise is Bärenreiter. They don’t maintain a blog, but the film on their publication process is worth a viewing (again, pushing their product):
That film is hosted by the late Christopher Hogwood, a scholar/musician who had a consuming interest in the vicissitudes of musical text. In the years immediately before his death, he served as Gresham Professor of Music, giving several series of public lectures on music and performance—and many of his lectures deal with issues that will recur on this blog, for example
Donald Burrows’s Open University videos on music printing are a neat multi-media look behind the scenes. For a similar survey, see http://www.musicprintinghistory.org/.
Malcolm Bilson’s lecture “Knowing the score” (asking the crucial question about urtext editions: “do we know how to read them?”) is available for viewing on his website:
Then there’s the ongoing BBC Radio 4 series Tales from the Stave, in which Frances Fyfield sits down with scholars and performers around a precious source. The episodes I’ve heard were always worth the half-hour.
Virtually the whole of the Neue Mozart Ausgabe (including the vitally important critical reports) is available online through underwriting of the Packard Humanities Institute. This is supposed to lead to the creation of a new Digital Mozart Edition—although what will come of that remains to be seen.
As the University of Chicago Press is now getting around to releasing study scores of their Verdi edition, they have made the critical reports available as free pdf downloads here:
This is good news indeed. Would that other editions would share so freely!
Bach Digital—scans of autograph manuscripts and secondary copies (scores or parts) from the Bach circle is an astounding resource.
And this list is exactly what it says it is: