BH-96-1 -- Music


Musik-Almanach: Daten und Fakten zum Musikleben in Deutschland [Music Almanac: Facts and Figures about Music in Germany]. Ed. Andreas Eckhardt. Kassel: Bärenreiter; Bosse. 21 cm. ISSN 0930-8954

1996/97 (1995). xiv, 1146 p. ISBN 3-7618-2480-7 (Bärenreiter); ISBN 3-7649-2480-2 (Bosse): DM 72.00

Published every three years, the Musik-Almanach contains all types of directory and statistical information about the music scene in Germany. This new edition is 200 pages longer than the previous edition and, at over 1,100 pages, is now a very substantial volume. Section B, the main part, contains twelve chapters on various areas of musical life in Germany, including Musical Organizations; Musical Instruction; Orchestras, Special Ensembles, and Music Theaters; and Festivals, Courses, and Conferences. The information is current as of Spring/Summer 1995. The extent of the coverage is impressive, although some major organizations and publishers are omitted. Parts A and C are new. Part A contains thirteen detailed survey essays on selected aspects of musical life in Germany, written by experts and expanding upon and supplementing the information from part B. Part C focuses on musical organizations and institutions in Europe. A five-page list of acronyms and a 230-page subject, person, and place index provide efficient access to the wealth of data included in this informative volume. [gm/jb]


Musikgeschichte Österreichs [The History of Music in Austria]. Eds. Rudolf Flotzinger and Gernot Gruber. Wien: Böhlau. 25 cm. öS 1986.00, öS 1598.00

Vol. 1. Von den Anfängen zum Barock [From the Beginnings to the Barock] / Ed. Rudolf Flotzinger. - 2nd rev. and expanded ed. 1995. 376 p. ill. ISBN 3-205-98490-0
Vol. 2. Vom Barock zum Vormärz [From the Barock to the Revolution of 1848]. Ed. Gernot Gruber. 2nd rev. and expanded ed. 1995. 398 p. ill. ISBN 3-205-98337-8
Vol. 3. Von der Revolution 1848 zur Gegenwart [From the Revolution of 1848 to the Present]. Ed. Rudolf Flotzinger and Gernot Gruber. 2nd rev. and expanded ed. 1995. 407 p. ill. ISBN 3-205-98338-6

The second edition of Musikgeschichte Österreichs retains the overall organization and most of the original contributors of the first edition (1977-79). . The new third volume is devoted to music from the mid-nineteenth century to the present and addresses topics such as popular music, jazz, and Austropop. The editors have avoided the difficulty presented by the historically varying borders of Austria by writing a territorial and not a national history. Although the social context of music is examined in the various chapters, focus remains on the music itself. Except for the music of the Middle Ages and the folk music of the 19th century, the individual chapters follow a chronological approach. Each volume contains a name, subject, and place index. This work is a major achievement. [kpl/jb]


Verzeichnis lieferbarer Musikalien: VLM [Computerdatei] = Music in Print. Frankfurt am Main : Buchhändler-Vereinigung. Title of user documentation: VLM aktuell.

May 1995 edition. 1 CD-ROM + User documentation (June 1995). ISBN 3-7657-1882-3 (CD-ROM); ISBN 3-7657-1885-8 (User documentation): DM 980.00 (2 editions/year)

The Verzeichnis lieferbarer Musikalien (VLM) is available in CD-ROM format. It is based on information provided by some 200 German music publishers and is issued twice a year. Intended for the music trade, VLM provides information on all types of available music-related publications: sheet music, scores, music books, etc.

The easily installed program runs on DOS-based PCs, but it is not Windows 95-compatible and works better from the keyboard than with the mouse. Printing, files export, a good online Help program, and a choice of interface language (German, English, and French) are standard features available in this database. All program operations can be carried out from 7 pull-down Table of Contentss (Search, List, Format, Action, Option, Language, and Database). Fields that can be searched individually or in combination include: composer/author, ISMN and ISBN, key word, index term, title, series, publisher, publication year, price, casting, format, and arrangement. VLM's shortcomings include the lack of uniformity in name entries (i.e., the five variant spellings of Shostakovich), the incomplete indexing of words in titles, and the omission of some important music publishers (Hohner-Verlag, Hänssler-Verlag). Truncation searches and the use of Boolean operators (and, or, not) make it possible to work around the first two problems. The third will be addressed by improved representation of publishers as VLM matures over the coming years to take its place alongside its companion titles, the Verzeichnis lieferbarer Bücher [Books in Print] and the Verzeichnis vergriffener Bücher [Out-of-Print Books]. [kpl/jb]


Opern-Lexikon [Opera Encyclopedia]. Kurt Pahlen. München: Heyne, 1995. 1023 p. 22 cm. Earlier title: Das grosse Heyne-Opern-Lexikon. ISBN 3-453-09088-8: DM 78.00

Kurt Pahlen selected approximately 2,000 operas (out of a total of 60,000) for his encyclopedia, which special care taken not to neglect contemporary opera. The large number of entries also ensures that lesser-known operas are covered. Listings are by co mposer and include a biography, list of operas (with original title, original language, characters, etc.), and information about the libretto, the music and the history of the opera. The section on the plot of each opera also contains analysis and asses sment of the musical structure of each piece. Unlike other opera guides, the Lexikon does not give the duration of performance. An overview of the operatic activity of the last decade ends with the May 31, 1995 premiere of Theo Loevendie's Es meé. [kpl/cmc]


Harenberg-Opernführer: der Schl&sumlsel zu 500 Opern, ihrer Handlung und Geschichte. Mit CD-Empfehlungen der "Opernwelt"-Redaktion [Harenberg Opera Guide: Guide to the Plots and History of 500 Operas, with CD Recommendations by the Editors of "Opernwelt"]. Alfred Beaujean et al. Opernwelt-CD-Tips [Opera CDTips]. Thomas Voigt and Stephan Mosch. - Dortmund : Harenberg. 1181 p. ill. 25 cm., plus 10 CDs. ISBN 3-611-00496-0: DM 98.00 + DM 149.00 (CDs)

Ten compact discs accompany the Harenberg guide, enabling the reader not just to read about but to hear a cross-section of operatic production through 150 musical examples in twelve hours of playing time. The guide covers 500 operas by 150 composers, incl uding contemporary operas and forgotten works (though obviously it is not as wide-ranging as Pahlen, above). Its look is "modern," with excellent graphics. Organization is by composer, with biography, bibliographical references, a complete listing of oper as with performance times. The analysis pays special attention to the music and the impact of the work in its own time. The main strength of this work lies in its uniquely extensive indexes, which take up over 100 pages and provide access by title, role, aria, etc. Also included is an evaluative "singer-lexicon," a chronology from the beginnings of opera to Schnittke (1995) and a directory to musical theater in Europe. [kpl/cmc]


Bertelsmann-Opernführer: Werke und Komponisten [The Bertelsmann Opera Guide: Works and Composers]. Eds. Curt A. Roesler and Siegmar Hohl. Gütersloh: Bertelsmann-Lexikon-Verlag, 1995. 607 p. 24 cm. ISBN 3-577-10522-4: DM 79 .00

The Bertelsmann guide is aimed at a popular readership.Three hundred sixty-six operas are discussed in varying levels of detail, according to the authors' judgment of the importance of each work. There is an article on each opera, explaining the plot, an alyzing the music, and describing the staging of the piece. Composers' biographies and analyses of each composer's place in the history of music follow and are presented in a knowledgeable and accessible fashion. A short description of important opera ho uses, a glossary of opera terms and extensive photographic illustrations assist the novice reader. Unfortunately, the analyses of operas tend to superficialities and generalization and the indexes lack cross references. Nonetheless, the Bertelsmann guid e successfully conveys a good deal of factual information in a popular, non-scholarly manner. Other recommended opera guides include Pahlen's Oper der Welt (1963) for its many examples of musical notation and special indexes, Attila Casampai's Opernführer (3rd ed., 1994), which includes short biographies of librettists and orchestral instrumentation, and of course the multi-volume New Grove Dictionary of Opera (1992) and Pipers Enzyklopädie des Musiktheaters. [kpl/cm c]

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