Claudio_Di_Veroli_plays_Ancient_Instruments_with_Baroque_Fingerings

BAROQUE KEYBOARD FINGERING: new 6th Edition


An old-fingering method for students and performers of Baroque keyboards. After its first version of 1983, enhanced editions received very favourable comments, including an endorsement by the late Igor Kipnis. This 6th revised edition, based on decades of studies and performance, is as always the most comprehensive work in the field, with 174 fingered passages and a bibliography of sources.

Scales and other passages are resolved with fifty-plus fingering Rules based on examples with original ancient fingerings from the Baroque era. Old-style fingerings are also suggested by the author for many difficult passages in the repertoire. Find below a published Review and a Preview. Please click on the button below for price details and to buy the book.

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This work has reached a wide distribution and readership by students, scholars and performers of early keyboard instruments. If you are interested in sponsoring it, please contact Dr. Di Veroli at This is a graphic, not a text for you to copy. You have to retype it when you send the e-mail. A link or text would be "harvested" by "spammers". Sorry for the inconvenience. .


Contents of BAROQUE KEYBOARD FINGERING: A METHOD

       1. INTRODUCTION — Foreword • Articulation • Position of hands and fingers • Crossing the fingers
       2. DIATONIC SCALES - RIGHT HAND — 16 Rules (*)
       3. DIATONIC SCALES - LEFT HAND — 16 Rules (*)
       4. ORNAMENTED SCALES — 8 Rules (*)
       5. PASSAGES OTHER THAN SCALES — 14 Rules (*)
       6. CATALOGUE OF WORKS FINGERED BY THE AUTHOR
       7. LITERATURE CITED — Ancient literature • Modern literature

(*) After the Rules, at the end of every chapter we have included fingering examples by the author, covering passages
       with special difficulties in well-known Baroque keyboard works.

Important features of the book:

—> A consistent and full reconstruction of the keyboard fingering technique prevalent throughout Europe
        from around mid-17th century till around mid-18th century, the heyday of the Baroque musical era.
—> The full coverage allows playing with old fingerings even the most difficult pieces of the time, including
        J.S. Bach who—as shown by extant evidenceis most likely to have played with old fingerings.
—> A practical organisation of the matter in rationally grouped and logically explained rules.
—> Excerpts from music scores with 174 fingered examples.
—> A method validated not only by the historical sources, but also by decades of successful public performance,
        including advanced works such as J.S. Bach's concertos for harpsichord and strings.

Why an eBook?

This work can be read on the screen of a PC, Mac, Tablet or any desktop or portable computer device capable of showing a document in Adobe Acrobat v.6.0 format or later. It is also formatted for conveniently printing on Letter paper, A4 and even A5 (or 2 A4 pages) for smaller music desks. Benefits of buying an eBook vs a ready-printed volume:
      • PRICE: a fraction of the equivalent printed volume
      • AVAILABILITY: an eBook is never out of print 
      •
SECURITY
: the reader can make a backup copy, so that the eBook cannot be lost or stolen
      • PRINTING: if a printed volume is really needed, the reader can print it from any home computer
      • COMPACTNESS: the main chapters with Fingering Rules span only 64 pages, which are easy to print as needed
      • PORTABILITY: the reader can carry the book around in a laptop computer or other portable device
      • REFERENCE: the reader interested in a particular topic can quickly search and find all the references to it in the eBook.
      •
TIMELINESS
: you buy the eBook and receive it on the spot.
This new book is a 6Mbyte document file. It downloads in less than 2 minutes using an Internet broadband service. .

Book Review in The British Clavichord Society Newsletter

Excerpts from the review—of the 5th edition—written by the distinguised Dutch harpsichordist and clavichordist Menno van Delft, published in The British Clavichord Society Newsletter, No.44, June 2009:

"Few would disagree, I think, with the notion that fingering is one of the most important technical issues in keyboard playing. Because of its impact on touch and articulation it very practically and directly relates to musical shaping and expression. This publication therefore is a welcome addition to the literature on the topic.
     Claudio Di Veroli ... has studied and put into practice early fingering techniques for decades, ... He offers a synthesis of fingering practices of the seventeenth and early eighteenth century, presented in the form of a set of more than fifty rules, divided over five chapters dealing with scales (both plain and ornamented), passages and all kinds of various textures.
[Some criticisms follow to a few points, which the author addressed in a response published in the BCSN, No. 45, Oct. 2009.]  
     Di Veroli offers a large amount of fingering examples ... and thoroughly examines all kinds of fingering questions. His fifty-plus rules help to pin-point the various principles at work when choosing a fingering. ... this book is a valuable in-depth study ... [T]he book will stimulate the reader to reconsider quite a few important fingering issues and to look at some of the historical information from a different point of view. Di Veroli has made a serious attempt to put into practice what the often confusing and contradicting sources and historical fingering examples suggest. For that he can only be praised!"

BAROQUE KEYBOARD FINGERING: book preview


--- FOREWORDS TO THE EDITIONS OF 1985 AND 2003

Recent years have witnessed a most welcome tendency to return to the use of ancient techniques for Baroque keyboard playing. These techniques are essential to achieve a stylish performance of Baroque music. The well-known Dutch harpsichordist Ton Koopman wrote that he found "foolish to try and play old organ and harpsichord music using modern techniques. If one regards old fingerings as means of articulation, they appear extremely refined and effective." Unfortunately, there are still very few teachers and players using early techniques. One reason is that it is hard to find a reliable set of systematic rules. Old treatises like F. Couperin's and modern methods like Maria Boxall's give many examples, but they alone are not sufficient, apart from being often contradictory. The main difficulties for the modern performer arise in scale passages; however, these can be easily fingered and played with ancient techniques, provided we are able to keep in mind the manifold possibilities available.The method in this book attempts to set down a comprehensive set of Baroque fingering rules ... . I am deeply indebted to Maria Boxall and to Mark Lindley: without their pioneering work in the field, this work would not have been possible.

... the first edition ... was immediately endorsed by Igor Kipnis ... Baroque fingerings ... for J.S. Bach ... [confirmed by] all the extant fingerings from Bach's circle. ... A reader reluctant to embark in ancient techniques, fearful that he/she will need to retain modern fingerings to play J.S. Bach, need not worry: although it requires years of practice, the Baroque technique—and its use for even the most advanced music of the time—is fully within the reach of the average modern harpsichordist and organist .... even the pinnacle of harpsichord technique—the Goldberg Variations and J.S. Bach's harpsichord concertos—are perfectly playable with strictly Baroque fingerings ....

--- CROSSING THE FINGERS
... One can broadly define two types of long-finger crossing movements ...:.
      • Crossing - More common, best for fast and/or legato or almost legato passages: ...
      • Shifting - Less common, best for slow and/or non-legato to staccato passages: ...
The author finds that a flexible approach is best, using either way—and also intermediate ones—according to the particular passage and the articulation desired ... .

--- 2. DIATONIC SCALES - RIGHT HAND
...
--- Rule S - CROSSING OVER THE STRONG BEAT (MAINLY FOR INÉGALES)
Late Renaissance and early Baroque sources tended to stress the aim of fingering scales by placing the 3rd finger on metrically strong notes. ... in mid and late Baroque times ... more often than not the opposite became the norm ... whenever possible the fingers should cross from a "strong" (long in inégales) to a "weak" note (short in inégales): this allows the player more time for crossing. The crossing movement is therefore more comfortable and, in the process, the player obtains a most natural rendering of the inégalité... The following example shows, over the original fingering by F. Couperin, an editiorial articulation written in modern notation.

Ex. RS-1. F. Couperin - L'Art de Toucher le Clavecin : "progrès d'octaves"

However, the reader should by no means feel that strong-to-weak crossings were an exclusive French practice. They are clearly prevalent in Alessandro Scarlatti ... showing that this tendency was present even in composers who wrote only in Italian style, with no inégales ...

--- Rule W - CROSSING OVER THE WEAK BEAT
Baroque musicians were not too rigid about rule S above. They followed it more often than not, but did not hesitate to disregard it whenever it was clearly not convenient, as in ... Les Ondes ....

--- 3. DIATONIC SCALES - LEFT HAND

Beginners find it surprising that, unlike modern technique, Baroque fingering is not symmetrical for the two hands. See the remark by Ferguson in Chapter 1, in the section on HOW TO USE THIS METHOD. We will see below how, in order to compensate for the reduced ability of the left hand, especially the ring and little finger, Baroque musicians accepted a significant role of the left thumb in scales. ...


More on Fingering and Playing the Baroque Harpsichord

The Baroque Keyboard Fingering eBook is a self-contained work. No additional files are needed to read it, understand it, enjoy it and/or put the advice into practice. As a complement to the eBook, an edition of fingered Baroque keyboard masterpieces is now available, carefully selected to practice and resolve the main difficulties in Baroque fingering technique. Please visit the website devoted to the new publication:
BAROQUE KEYBOARD MASTERPIECES FINGERED.

Most readers of Baroque Keyboard Fingering are obviously interested in Baroque music interpretation for the harpsichord and other keyboards. A full coverage of the matter, with most problems resolved, is available in the latest comprehensive treatise: for more details please visit the website PLAYING THE BAROQUE HARPSICHORD..

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