Buxtehude commentary published for RCO members
Dr Geoffrey Webber's extensive commentary on the current editions of Buxtehude's organ music has been published online for RCO members.
Dr Webber's web-based commentary on each Buxtehude organ work marks the Buxtehude Tercentenary year (Buxtehude died on 9 May 1707).
The aim of this new web-resource is to allow players to move beyond having to rely on any one edition, and to make their own informed decisions about the textual problems faced hitherto only by the editors.
The material in the new resource has four principal aims: first, it informs the reader of the principal textual problems associated with each piece; second, it divulges the solutions to these problems given in the various editions; third, it provides a fresh judgement on many of the solutions suggested in the various editions; fourth, it offers new resolutions where appropriate to many of the difficulties encountered. The material can be read alongside any of the five post-1950 editions.
There are ten documents in the web resource:
Introduction and Index
Part One - Non-chorale compositions ex C
Part Two - Non-chorale compositions ex D
Part Three - Non-chorale compositions ex E
Part Four - Non-chorale compositions ex F and F#
Part Five - Non-chorale compositions ex G
Part Six - Non-chorale compositions ex A (and Quarti Toni)
Part Seven - Chorale compositions A-M
Part Eight - Chorale compositions N-Z
Aspects of Performance Practice
Dr Webber’s complete commentary is available for members to download at www.rco.org.uk/library.php
Notes to editors
1. Geoffrey Webber was Organ Scholar at New College Oxford, where he studied organ with Nicholas Danby and Gillian Weir. He completed a doctorate on the transmission of Italian idioms in North German church and organ music in the seventeenth century, and was appointed Precentor and Director of Studies in Music at Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge in 1989. He is the author of North German Church Music in the Age of Buxtehude (OUP, 1996) and co-editor with Nicholas Thistlethwaite of The Cambridge Companion to the Organ (CUP, 1998). His plans for the Buxtehude anniversary year include two articles for Early Music and a Choral Evensong on BBC Radio 3.
2. The Royal College of Organists is an educational charity whose first objective is to “promote and advance the arts and practice of organ playing and choral direction; to set and maintain proper standards and to educate and promote study and research in such arts.” As well as having some 2,700 members based in 40 countries, it is the only organisation in the United Kingdom with a Royal Charter to be dedicated to the promotion and advancement of a single instrument, the pipe organ. Described by Mozart himself as “the king of the instruments”, the organ holds a unique place in world music with a tradition stretching back nearly two thousand years.