Evaluation of the sources
The main sources are the autograph manuscripts and the first editions accompanied by Reger’s proofs. In each case these are being compared with each other and are described in the Kritischer Bericht with regard to their make up and special features. Reger’s notes about misprints (for example, in letters and on errata notices) will naturally be taken into consideration in preparing the edition. In making editorial decisions, versions for other scorings remain of secondary importance because of the different stylistic idiom; they will be referred to in particular in questions of pitch. Where Reger’s sources do not survive but their contents are known through copies or similar means, material in other hands will be referred to as a substitute.
Reger regarded the latest form of the work in each case in the working process as the organic further development and refinement of what preceded it. Therefore, the authorized first printed edition which resulted at the end of this process served with the greatest weight as the primary source forthe music text of the RWA. This also applies to works which were issued in succession in different forms of publication, such as firstly in a periodical and later in an anthology compiled by Reger. Where there are differences with the manuscript sources (or even with earlier printed editions), the different variants have been checked for plausibility and validity. If the differences in the final version of the first edition were not conscious alterations on Reger’s part, but mistakes which have remained undiscovered or mistaken interpretations by the engraver, a reading has been taken from the manuscripts or an early printed edition. In problematic cases the variants have been described in a footnote.
Divergences in the RWA from the primary source
Where the RWA diverges from the first edition, this is recorded in the Lesartenverzeichnis of the Kritischer Bericht; this is included in full on the DVD, whereas the printed volume concentrates on passages which relate to the tonal shape of the work. In the printed musical text the following alterations are indicated by diacritical markings (or by a comment), if they are not substantiated by another source:
- addition of missing notes: in square brackets
- addition of necessary accidentals: in square brackets
- addition of missing dynamic indications or registration instructions: in square brackets
- addition of missing articulation marks: in square brackets
- addition of missing ties: in square brackets
- addition of missing slurs: broken lines
- addition of cautionary accidentals: in small type
Occasionally Reger used round or square brackets in the musical text, for example, for additional or alternative indications (especially cautionary accidentals); these have been standardized as round brackets. Manual, registration and coupling instructions have been standardized: when they are simply reminders (“sempre III. Man 8’, 4’”), they have been set in round brackets; as a result, the indication “sempre” is unnecessary in many cases. Where the right and left hand play on the same manual, this is always indicated by a curved brace before the manual instruction, regardless of whether both hands change at the same time at this point in the work, or one follows another.
Cautionary accidentals, which Reger himself often used, have been added by the editors for clarification such as when, for example, in the preceding bar, in an adjacent stave or in another part, the note in question has been altered (if necessary also in another octave). When altering tied notes occur over a line break, these are indicated in the new line; a subsequent alteration requires a corresponding accidental. Alterations also apply where several parts are notated within a system for each occurrence of this note within a bar, irrespective of whether it belongs to a particular part.
Further standardization of the notation has been avoided; this also applies to passages, generally fast runs, which do not fit regularly into the metric structure (for example, because of a missing X-tuplet value). Interventions in Reger’s notation were therefore only made if, in the opinion of the editors, the substance and understanding of the work was unaffected by this and that the alteration resulted in an improvement for the user (change of key, direction of note stems, etc.). Such editorial decisions of purely orthographic significance are listed in the Lesartenverzeichnis on the DVD.
In individual cases, parts of earlier or later stages of a work have been separately edited and included on the DVD as a printable PDF.