Handel Neun deutsche Arien…

Nine German Arias for Soprano, Solo Instrument and Basso continuo…
Edited by Ullrich Scheideler
G. Henle Verlag (968).
ix +42pp +parts for solo instrument, basso and continuo €16.00.

The ‘German Arias’ were intended to be published in vol. 49 of Chrysander’s complete edition in the 1890s. Henle has now produced a cheap but thoroughly edited version. Normally Handel wrote quickly then got his amanuensis to make a clear version, which was then reproduced several times and sometimes he had it printed. In this case, it seems that Handel sent his only copy to Germany.

The Henle edition certainly looks better than the ones I have (or rather, used to have). It consists of a score and separate booklets for the solo instrument (not specified, though ad lib for violin, recorder or oboe) with smaller-stave for voice, basso (single stave), and continuo with the upper two staves in smaller print and sometimes pages spread out in three. The score has a realisation. The nine arias can be sung in sequence, though I’d favour more variety – alternative pieces could also be interspersed.

This is an excellent edition, and good value.

Clifford Bartlett