View Full Version : bach 2-part inventions

Mar-27-2004, 7:01pm
A long time ago I had a book of Bach's 2-part inventions arranged for violin and viola. I would love to find that book again. I haven't had any luck looking on the web for a supplier. I want to learn the viola part on the mandola, in the hopes that I will meet a mandolin player who can play the violin part on the mandolin. Does anyone have a source for classical sheet music? Thanks. Daniel

Mar-27-2004, 7:54pm

... About 1/2 way down the page and you should find what you're looking for. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif

Hope this helps!

Mar-27-2004, 9:54pm
Thanks, so much for your response. I have not been able to open that site, I think because my version of Adobe Acrobat is a later version or something. On my previous computer it opened fine. Somehow on this newer computer I can't get it to work. Actually, I am hoping to buy a book of the inventions. I think it was Schirmer publishing, but I'm not sure.

Jim Garber
Mar-27-2004, 10:12pm
I checked the edition I have and it was from the International Music Company (http://www.internationalmusicco.com)

Here is the curretn address and phone:
International Music Company
5 West 37th Street
New York, NY 10018
(212) 391-4300

I did do a search and found this page (http://www.internationalmusicco.com/search2.cfm?PageNo=2&SearchVal=893&SearchParams=Title,Content,Alias1,Complyr,Section, Subsection,CatNum).

They still list this as:
BACH, Johann Sebastian (1685-1750)
893 # #Fifteen Duets (after Two-Part Inventions, S. 772-786) #(DAVID) $10.00


Tony R.
Mar-28-2004, 5:47am
Sorry to butt in here Jim, but (IMHO) the expressions 'Schirmer Edition' #'International Music Company' and 'J.S. Bach' are simply not meant to inhabit the same planet!
My advice to anyone wanting the Two Part Inv.s would be to get an honest clean copy (ie. URTEXT - remember, Jim?) of the New Bach Edition (suggest Barenreiter or Henle) and use that. There won't be any intrusive phrasings, ghastly bowings (not that we need 'em anyway!) or One Hundred Year Old ideas of Mr. So & So - EDITOR. I don't think any of us need all that now, most esp. J.S.B.
The only advantage I can see to using an old chesnut like that is if you have to have the lower part in the c clef. I personally just read the bass clef when playing Bach on the Mandola (or Mandolin - imagining I'm playing the Mandola) - I just think of it like a Cello (or even a Mandocello if you like!)
Incidentally,(as I'm sure you all know) an awful lot of the Bach Cello Suites make wonderful Mandola/Mandolin #repetoire, (even the 5th. suite with the top string tuned down a tone)
tho'for the 6th. suite you would need an extra course of strings. (excepting the Gavottes I&II, which make a great piece as they are.
And of course for those of us with more limited techniques (for which read Tony R.!) they are much easier than the Violin Sonatas and Partitas but equally as satisfying musically.
And by the way, the Barenreiter Edition of the Cello Suites is of course the definitive!

Mar-28-2004, 9:18am
You're right ... some of the scores require Adobe Acrobat 4.0 to open properly. I seem to recall having poked around the site completely and I found a link to download the old reader. I installed it to a different directory than my current version of Acrobat Reader 6 and now I can open pretty much anything in the icking archive. You might want to give that a try ...

Hope this helps ...

Jim Garber
Mar-28-2004, 9:46am
The only advantage I can see to using an old chesnut like that is if you have to have the lower part in the c clef. I personally just read the bass clef when playing Bach on the Mandola (or Mandolin - imagining I'm playing the Mandola) - I just think of it like a Cello (or even a Mandocello if you like!)
I do see your point in this matter, Tony. I suppose it just depends on how much clef-wrestling Daniel would like to do. One thing about the edition I have is that in addition to the bass clef being transposed to C-clef, there are no finger markings (as opposed to the Hladky edition of Beethoven which drives me absolutely crazy). Yes, there are dynamics and slurs, but, in any case, one could overwrite or ignore those. And there are practically no bow markings at all. Not perfect, but it is what I have.

I had played these years ago (when I was mostly playing mandola) with a good friend over a wonderful summer.

As Tony intimated, I am just getting used to the idea of urtext editions, which I understand to be the purer notation -- as close to the composers edition -- without the adding layers of commentary of various latter-day editors.


Mar-28-2004, 10:03am
I agree with Tony's sentiments - in principle - however, I too keep one of the dreadful "editions" on hand, being (understandably) one of those "alto clef people". The pieces are nice, but not difficult, and I would not like to have to learn the lower parts of them all, which is what my limited bass clef recognition would require of me, as opposed to simply sight-reading them whenever necessary.

Now, all I need to find is a mandolinist to sight read them with! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/laugh.gif


Tony R.
Mar-28-2004, 10:37am
Hello Jim!
As you've probably guessed by now, rotten old editions of Baroque Music are like waving a Red Rag at a Bull as far as I'm concerned. The trouble is, apart from all the editorial c..p, you often can't even be sure that the actual notes are correct.
Take Hladky editions for example - (I know you've been into this recently) - when I see something as overblown as that, alarm bells start to ring and I automatically think 'I can't trust this source - If he can do that, what else is he up to?'
So when the only editions available of more unusual repertoire (ie.not Beethoven/Henle) are dubious, where does that leave us? Can we be sure, not having seen the composer's autograph (and most of us never will) that that funny passage in 3rds. in your Guiliani Quartet is Kosher or not?
At least with a good Urtext edition I feel that I can get a little nearer to that necessary position of trust (and even then, the detective in me.......)

Tony R.
Mar-28-2004, 10:55am
Hi 'Bratsche'
With a name like that I can't for the life of me think what your other instrument is!
Now if you'd been clever and played Bach cello suites from a cello copy your Bass clef would have been more fluent!
Joking aside, my Alto clef is not so good so that's my excuse.
Hey! did you ever try the Brandenburg 6 on the mandola? you must have done, now we're talking duets from God!
I can just about get around it, alltho' the semiquavers in the last movement are still a bit beyond me! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/mandosmiley.gif

Mar-28-2004, 11:18am
I am interested in playing the mandola from the alto clef. WHen I started reading music for the viola/mandola, it never occurred to me that I had the option to not learn the alto clef, since that's what I thought viola music used. It wasn't till I played with a mandolin orchestra that I learned some mandola players read music in different ways. I can read Bach, especially due to the frequent scale-like passages. I just looked at the International Music Company site that was mentioned and they seem to only sell to dealers or with a $40.00 minimum. Tony, you mentioned 2 other possible sites. Can you tell me how to find them? Thanks, again for the help. Daniel

Jim Garber
Mar-28-2004, 12:10pm
I think you can order that music (and lots more) from Patelson's (http://www.patelson.com/) in New York, which is where Tony and I bumped into each other in themandolin section.


Tony R.
Mar-28-2004, 12:19pm
Hi! Daniel.
If you can read bass clef or want to learn, this is the original version for keyboard. If hovever you really are tied to the alto clef it won't be for you.
I just did this:
Type in: Barenreiter verlag
click on: Welcome to Barenreiters World of Music (YUK!)
Drag down J.S. Bach in Author Box
Title: Inventionen (has to be German, did not want to recognise '2 part inventions')
The no.is BA5150. Price 12.50 Euros. Good stuff for less than a third the price of Schirmer! You also get the 15 three part inventions (or sinfonias) thrown in as well. These could make good trios or be transcribed for Mandolin Orchestra if you like.
It looks like you could shop direct there with a credit card or there is a drop down menu of dealers in many countries.
Good luck and enjoy Bach! http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Tony R.
Mar-28-2004, 12:34pm
Dear Jim,
I hate to tell you this but when I was looking thru Violin music to play on the mando in Patelson's it was a Schirmer paradise! On of our fiddlers complained bitterly to both me and them that there wasn't a 'clean' BEETHOVEN Concerto to be had at all! And yet you got lovely Henle edition Beethoven Mandolin pieces! Nuts!!
I certainly couldn't find any version of the Corelli Folia Variations there,(is that standard fiddle repetoire or what?)
And, I have to say, we found the Juiliard Shop no better, (however one spells it! - is it two ls?)
Perhaps us Brits. are just too damn' fussy!
Perhaps Daniel will have more luck than me. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/sad.gif

Mar-29-2004, 10:25am
I have the whole book , for two guitars, but works well with mandolins, same monophonic lines.........

I 'll post the publisher tomorrow, may be out of print, my source- I mean.

Mar-29-2004, 10:36am
[QUOTE]"we found the Juiliard Shop no better, (however one spells it! - is it two ls?)"

Yes, Tony: Juilliard. But, the proper spelling is: Jail-Yard. Or, if you prefer, alla inglesa, Gaol-Yard. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

(This from an alumnus of said, famed institution...)

Tony R.
Mar-29-2004, 12:24pm
Dear Victor,
Don't worry, I was only knocking the shop not the school!
Mind you, at least it has a shop - when I first turned up at college (Royal Academy of Music, London, 1974,)it didn't even have a BAR!
(We soon changed that!)

P.S. It still has no shop (selling Barenreiter Bach or otherwise!)
Best wishes!

Mar-29-2004, 3:19pm
Hmm... Tony, you gave me an idea: While I have been out of J-Yard for, oh, a while now, http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/wink.gif I could, I say: could suggest to the powers that be at my alma mater to trade the bookstore (which, quite candidly, borders on being a gift-shop with Juilliard-logo-ridden paraphernalia rather than a music bookstore proper) for... a BAR!!!

If nothing else, that would enhance the mood of the stolid, 100%-cement, 0% life-form building. http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Tony R.
Mar-29-2004, 5:08pm
That sounds a splendid idea Victor, then we could all drink the 'Bach' dry!
Your joke about 'Jailyard' reminds me of the expression our orchestra has for the Summer Opera Festival at Glyndebourne,(which we do every year.) It's known as 'Glynditz' (after 'Colditz') because once you are there for the summer there's no escape!
(not terribly 'P.C.' but awfully British!)

No Don Giovanni's in Sussex this year, alas!

I have to spend the day tomorrow examining at my Alma Mater, alongside my old teacher who is 93! We will probably end up in the Bar!
(who says music doesn't keep you young!)

Mar-31-2004, 1:26pm
Tony, the 6th Brandenburg is something I haven't tried yet. The only "performance" of this work I have done (on bratsches) was the last movement - accompanied by piano with some friends, for a church talent show a bunch of years ago! Unfortunately, I have been unable to convince the other bratscheist (?) to take up mandola-ing! Though I have suggested it to her several times... http://www.mandolincafe.net/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/laugh.gif


Tony R.
Mar-31-2004, 1:58pm
At least you've done it.
It's the only one I've never performed and of course it would have to be my favourite of them all!