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Subject: Instrumentation in the Ring (was AC's Question about Solti)
From: Joe OConnell <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Joe OConnell <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Mon, 30 Mar 2009 19:12:09 -0700
Content-Type:text/plain
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Thanks to Scott for his correction.  I hope that he or others will expand on
this topic with facts _and_ citations.  

Scott wrote that my previous post was "flat wrong" when I wrote that
"Contemporary Wagner tubas are doubled, so two of them can play all four of
the Wagner tuba parts". 

Scott is exactly correct, and I was wrong.  

In the very first bar of Rheingold Sc2, on page 84 of the Dover "Das
Rheingold in Full Score", all four of the Wagner Tubas play separate parts
_at the same time_.  Thus, even though I was correct in writing that
contemporary Wagner tubas are doubled, I was wrong to state that "two of
them can play all four of the Wagner tuba parts."  I have corrected the
Wikipedia citation at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Der_Ring_des_Nibelungen#cite_note-wagner_tuba-1
3 

A question for Scott and others:  does this similar issue apply in the other
three operas?  In other words, do the scores of the other three operas have
parts which require all four Wagner tubas _at the same time_?

Question to Scott and others:  does the bass clarinet have the same problem
(in all four operas)?  In other words, Wagner's original score has parts for
both the A-natural and the B-flat bass clarinets, so both instruments were
required in Wagner's era.  However, the contemporary bass clarinet can play
both the A-natural and the B-flat parts, so the question is whether the
score for all/any of the four operas has/have two bass clarinet parts _at
the same time_.  If so, then two bass clarinets are required today, just as
they were in Wagner's era.  

Please provide cites to the exact bars and pages (accurate citations are
necessary for Wikipedia entries).

Thank!

Joe

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