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Klarinet Archive - Posting 000662.txt from 1996/04

From: "Dan Leeson: LEESON@-----.EDU>
Subj: More on K. 622 history (Jacobowitz and Leeson discussion)
Date: Tue, 23 Apr 1996 16:25:33 -0400

The discussion so far goes something like this:

Fred suggested that there never was a score of K. 622
and that Mozart's conception went from his head to a
set of performance parts.

Dan suggested that this scenario runs counter to the
way Mozart worked. He always produced a score from
which parts were then extracted by a professional

Fred's response was that the first edition of the
concerto (1801 if I remember correctly) had to come
from something so the publisher had to have either
a score or a set of parts. Furthermore, the reviewer
knew (because he commented on it) that the edition
- i.e., the solo part - had to have been modified
so that it could be played on a standard clarinet and
not a specialized ied instrument as Stadler owned.

I don't think we have any disagreement at all. Of course the
publisher of the first edition had to produce the material
from something and that could have been a score OR a set of
parts or even something written on the back of a paper bag.
And I agree that Fred is quite correct that the reviewer of
that first edition knew about the unusual range of the instrument
which Mozart had in mind when he created the work. And I have
no real knowledge about which source might have been used (though
I think it was a set of parts and not a score).

But none of this alters my comment about Fred's original suggestion.
What came from Mozart's hand? A score from which parts were
created, OR a set of parts directly? It was to this point that
all my comments were directed, nothing else. And I reiterate
that in no known work did Mozart create that work directly into
performance parts. Never! He always produced a score, some more
complete than others, all in a nice handwriting, most without
corrections, but always a score.

I do add that there appears to have been another business practice
in the late 1700s about the production of parts. Sometimes, the
theatre manager or sponsor of a concert would pay to have performance
parts produced from a score. And such an effort always resulted
in ownership of those parts belonging to that person and not the
owner of the score. That scenario doesn't clarify what happened with
the concerto but it does show how the score and the performance parts
could have become separated with one or the other being the source
of the first edition of 1801.

And whoever the editor was for that first edition was the person
who made the changes to the solo part that many musicologists
today have tried to reverse. But that is the hard part; i.e.,
trying to figure out what something might have been by using the
contemporary version of what it is as the source. It is not
dissimilar to having a map which shows you where you are but not
which path you took to get there. There have been lots of arguments
about the various basset clarinet versions of K. 622 which some
arguing that simply because a basset clarinet COULD go down to low
C didn't mean that every C in the work should be played down there.
But that's a different discussion.

Dan Leeson, Los Altos, California

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