Page 1 of the Scherzo from Op. 4, from the Sibelius collection of the National Library of Finland (HUL 0552)
The next release in the JSW Critical Edition is now imminent, and includes all the works by Sibelius for string orchestra. JSW is published by the National Library of Finland, the Sibelius Society of Finland and the publishing house Breitkopf & Härtel (Wiesbaden).
Jean Sibelius wrote eight works for string orchestra over a wide time span stretching from the early 1890s until 1939. Many of these are either arrangements of earlier compositions or were composed in conjunction with a piano version. In addition to strings, additional instruments are used in some pieces (timpani, triangle, flutes, harp).
This new volume contains three first publications: two versions of the Impromptus and the early version of Rakastava. During the editing process, some previously unknown source materials have come to light. These include the score and parts from Andante festivo’s first performance (1939) in the YLE archive as well as another contemporary score with parts in the archive of Ylioppilaskunnan Soittajat. These new sources have significantly expanded the understanding of this work.
Edited by Pekka Helasvuo and Tuija Wicklund
1. Scherzo (Presto – from Op. 4)
2. Impromptu, Op. 5 No. 5
3. Impromptu, Op. 5 Nos 5–6 (early version)
4. Impromptu, Op. 5 Nos 5–6 (revised version)
5. Rakastava, Op. 14 (early version)
6. Rakastava, Op. 14 (revised version)
7. Romance in C, Op. 42
8. Suite mignonne, Op. 98a
9. Suite champêtre, Op. 98b
10. Suite caractéristique, Op. 100
11. Andante festivo, JS 34b
Click here to read our review of three recent Sibelius publications from Breitkopf & Härtel: the study score of Skogsrået (The Wood-Nymph), a selection of 18 piano pieces and the manuscript facsimiles of Luonnotar.
The latest release in Breitkopf & Härtel’s JSW critical edition of Sibelius’s music contains two orchestral rarities: the Overture in E major, JS 145, and Ballettscen, JS 163. These are Sibelius’s first two purely orchestral works, dating from his study year in Vienna (1890–91).
This volume is edited by Tuija Wicklund. Among the new information revealed in the volume is that the ending of Ballettscen was changed: the one in the autograph manuscript differs from the one in the score made by the copyist Ernst Röllig.
The catalogue number is SON 627 and the volume costs €141.88.
More information (including downloadable introduction in English and German) and orders: https://www.breitkopf.com/work/6198/16575
See also: review of the JSW Scènes historiques (SON 625): click here
The ground-breaking critical edition Jean Sibelius Werke published by Breitkopf & Härtel is continuing. Most recently published is the Violin Concerto, ed. by editor-in-chief Timo Virtanen. This volume contains the two versions of the famous concerto (SON 622, EUR 252.00).
Plans for 2015 are as follows:
In March 2015 a volume of selected piano pieces will appear, drawn from the Sibelius Piano Works, ed. by Kari Kilpeläinen and Anna Pulkkis (EB 8855, EUR 15.90).
In April 2015 a special volume will be issued: a full-colour facsimile reproduction of Luonnotar (score and piano-vocal reduction) – a composition which counts among the most modern works by Sibelius. The editor is Timo Virtanen (SON 626, EUR 79.00 – introduction price valid until 8th December, 2015!).
A new ‘Breitkopf Study Score’ will feature the long-neglected orchestral work Skogsrået (The Wood-Nymph) (PB 5564). This will be its first publication apart from the volume of the Complete Edition, ed. by Tuija Wicklund.
Further volumes of the Complete Edition are scheduled in 2015:
– Piano Works 4 (Works without opus numbers), ed. by Anna Pulkkis (SON 623)
– Works for Male Choir a cappella, ed. by Sakari Ylivuori (SON 624)
– Scènes historiques I, Op. 25 and II. Op. 66, ed. by Kari Kilpeläinen (SON 625).
Source: Breitkopf & Härtel
The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra’s plan to include Sibelius’s Valse triste in its New Year’s Concert for 2015 has come to nothing.
The orchestra issued the following statement:
‘Die Wiener Philharmoniker bedauern außerordentlich, das bereits bekanntgegebene Programm des Neujahrskonzertes 2015 abändern zu müssen. Das im Gedenken an den 150. Geburtstag von Jean Sibelius angesetzte Werk Valse triste wird wegen unannehmbarer Forderungen des Verlages im Rahmen des Neujahrskonzertes 2015 nicht aufgeführt werden.’ [‘The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra greatly regrets that the previously announced programme for the New Year’s Concert 2015 must be changed. Valse triste, which had been included to mark the 150th anniversary of Jean Sibelius’s birth, will not be performed in the context of the 2015 New Year’s Concert owing to unacceptable demands from the publisher.’]
Breitkopf & Härtel deeply regrets the decision of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra to withdraw Jean Sibelius’ “Valse triste” from the program of its 2015 New Year’s Concert.
As grounds for its withdrawal, the orchestra claims that the publisher is demanding excessively high fees. This is not the case.
On the contrary, Breitkopf & Härtel’s initial offer was moderate already. Another substantial reduction of the fees, taking into consideration the special cultural aspect of the inauguration of the Sibelius Year in the framework of the New Year’s Concert, still failed to bring about an agreement.
The sole issue for the negotiation was the license fee claimed by the publisher for the film rights (synchronization rights). Only the broadcasting and public performance rights (via radio, television, etc.) of “Valse triste” are protected by performing rights organization (e.g. GEMA): they thus were not an issue in Breitkopf & Härtel’s contract offer. There were also no hire fees involved, since the sheet music to “Valse triste” is exclusively available as sales material and is subject to controlled prices in Germany and Austria.
Jean Sibelius would have deserved a “front row seat” at the concert marking the beginning of the year in which his 150th birthday will be celebrated far and wide.
The musical commentator Norman Lebrecht observed: ‘The amount requested by the publisher was 4,000 Euros. The Vienna Phil refused to pay more than 2,000. The orch recently trousered a million dollars from Sibelius’s near-compatriot… the Birgit Nilsson Foundation. Have they no shame? Absolutely none.’