Which Edition is Best for Me?
There are various good editions for the music you are working on. WIth so many options, you must ask yourself, which edition should I purchase?
While this website offers its opinions on what the best editions are, what this website recommends the most may not actually be the best edition that you are looking for.
For example, the Barenreiter Urtext, a leading edition for composers such as Bach, Beethoven, and Mozart, does not include fingering suggestions. This is very suitable for the polyphonic music of Bach, in which there are multiple ways to find a suitable fingering for yourself. However, with a work such as a Beethoven Concerto, it may be extremely helpful to have fingering suggestions.
With Chopin, the current leading edition is the Polish National Edition. However, you may find that the Durand Edition edited by Alfred Cortot to be a more suitable edition for Chopin. The reason being is that Cortot wrote many exercises and practices to go with the Chopin works. These exercises give certain insights on how to properly perform a difficult passage.
Here you can purchase the leading National Edition for Chopin Etudes:
Durand Edition edited by Alfred Cortot:
Editions to Not Buy
If you purchase a score of classical music, and the publishing company for that edition is not listed anywhere on this website, chances are, you have spent your money buying a bad edition to your music.
This edition is an example of a score you do not want to buy:
This edition of Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto by Classical Music Collection is quite bad. There is no information inside of this book about the publishing date. Also, there is not an introductory note or comments mentioning about the sources for making this edition. While this edition was very inexpensive, it is better to use IMSLP than to spend money and use an edition such as this.
As seen from this picture, the print is this edition is extremely tiny! You will have to squint your eyes in order to see the notes on this page. You do not want to have to spend extra time learning a piece of music simply because you cannot see the notes that well. This will only cause frustration and anger.
Safe yourself from such an inconvenience and buy the best edition for your music. If you are going to spend money, then you should do it right!
Buy Best Edition Beethoven
The most recommended edition for Beethoven’s Fifth Piano Concerto on this website is the Barenreiter Urtext.
Of course, if you find an edition for this score, such as the Henle Verlag Urtext, Wiener, Edition Peters, or even the Schirmer, you will still have a good edition for your music.