Dieterich Buxtehude (1637–1707) Organ Works
Urtext – Critical Source Edition of the Free Organ Works edited by Harald Vogel [org]
- pure source edition (no mixture of different transmissions)
- comprehensive commentary (Vol. I/2 & II)
(with texts about the sources, chronology, use of keys, liturgic placement as well as detailed critical remarks, incl. music examples (in German only))
- good page turns
- flexible division of voices (on 2 or 3 systems, good legibility)
- contains facsimiles
You will find more works by north German organ masters here.
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This edition is the result of Harald Vogel’s many years of practice as an organist and musicologist. The music text is based on a reevaluation of 17th- and 18th-century manuscripts containing the free organ and keyboard works by Buxtehude. They originated during a transitional phase between the traditional letter tablature and the staff notation still in use today. Since many works have survived only in transcriptions for staff notation, the editor was confronted with a high error rate, which he carefully analyzes in the “Einzelanmerkungen”.
During the preparation of the edition, the editor always kept sight of the performance practice, but still, the image of the sources is never distorted (e. g. by superfluous rests, beaming not conforming to the sources and the unhistorical adjustment of time signatures) and stays very close to the compositional notation, the letter tablature. The flexible use of three staves and the differentiated distribution of the voices on the staves allow for an approximation in reading conventions of historical notation with its resulting information about hand division.
Grouping the free organ repertoire into works with obbligato pedal and works for manuals, this edition is organized in two volumes. The first subvolume (I/1, EB 9304) contains the Preface and the Preludes, whereas the second subvolume (I/2, EB 9305) contains Toccatas, Ostinato works, alternative versions and a comprehensive Critical Commentary (in German only). Volume II (EB 9306) contains Buxtehude’s free organ and keyboard works (manualiter) with the corresponding texts (Preface and Critical Commentary).
Until 1971, Harald Vogel worked on a dissertation (with Georg von Dadelsen, Hamburg) on “Die Fuge um Bach”. Besides the description of the “inclusion” of triple measures into the C notation and the irregularities of the “voice mutation” in the polyphonic structures, this also included a discussion about the justification of the “inner textual criticism”. With the inner textual criticism, deviations in parallel passages are unified. The North German fugue style, reaching a peak in Buxtehude’s work, is characterized by a constant diversity of details in subject and polyphonic progressions. One of the “indicators of the fantastic style” is the dissolution of the polyphonic structures at the ends of the fugues, evident in Buxtehude’s work.
In this edition, a musical text is presented that avoids the uniformity of detail not conforming to the sources. However, there are many examples of transcription and cursory errors, which are analyzed in a methodical systematic manner.
About the editor:
As an organist, professor, organ expert, and scholar, Harald Vogel has rendered outstanding services to the interpretation of early music and especially to historical performance practice concerning the organ for decades. He has received numerous awards, including an ECHO Klassik as Instrumentalist of the Year (2012), honorary doctorates from Luleå University of Technology (Sweden, 2008) and Oberlin College (USA, 2014), as well as the Buxtehude Prize of the City of Lübeck (2018). Harald Vogel is the author and editor of numerous scholarly publications and editions. Through his lifelong performance practice, he can look back on an extensive discography, including the complete recording of Buxtehude's organ works, which he recorded in various locations with historical organ instruments of the North German organ building tradition in Scandinavia, North Germany and the Netherlands.