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Good intentions are simply not good enough (to freely paraphrase Kurt Tucholsky): the arpeggione; a kind of hybrid instrument like a large bowed guitar; never won acceptance among musicians. This curiosity of instrumental engineering would certainly have long since been consigned to oblivion had not Franz Schubert of all people composed his A minor sonata for it. This three-movement work is now truly immortal; but at the same time presents a problem as an Urtext because the original arpeggione part cannot be performed on those instruments that most closely approximate its sound – clearly the viola or violoncello – without some interventions in the text. G. Henle Verlag solves the dilemma on the one hand by setting the arpeggione Urtext part above the original piano part (score); and on the other by clearly denoting the few necessary octave shifts in the included instrumental parts. Out of the question for the publisher was a transcription for another instrument such as the violin (as was included in Diabelli's posthumous first edition); flute; or other high melodic instrument; because these are simply too far removed from the sound Schubert had in mind. At best; a contrabass part might still work.
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