The Complete Studies for guitar (Tecla 105)
NEW PUBLICATION NOVEMBER 2002
The complete detailed notes on each work.
Opus 1.Studio per la chitarra
(“Studio” for the guitar)
per la chitarra, opus 1, was first published in Vienna by Artaria
and advertised there on 22 April 1812.
Despite its opus number, it was not his first published work:
its plate number indicates that it was published together with his opp.
34 and 35 and before his op. 36.
It seems, therefore, either that the work existed in some
unpublished form at an early date, or, more probably, that the opus
number was reserved for what was considered a major work. The publisher Artaria paid
Giuliani the enormous sum for the time of 600 florins for it (Heck, The
Birth…, II, 4-5).
The date, 1812, is very
close in time to Sor’s Studio which appeared in London in
about 1815, and is not far away in time from Aguado’s Estudios
of 1820. The term
“studio” at this time meant a collection of didactic pieces. For a discussion of the exact
meaning of the words studio, esercizio, study, etc., see an
article which I wrote for the EGTA Journal in 1994.
Giuliani did not intend
this work to be used by absolute beginners. In his preface he wrote that
it is for those who have already made a beginning: “for those who,
already possessing the first elements, wish to perfect themselves
without the assistance of a teacher.”
The layout of this present
edition is largely the same as in Giuliani’s original. For example, in Part Three the
instructions about each example are printed immediately above the
music in the original edition, and I have done the same here (rather
than putting them only in the introduction).
appears in the original edition in Italian, French, and German. I have translated it into
English here, from the Italian.
No tempo indications are
given in parts 1 and 2.
Part One, for the right hand
The exercises in this Part
One appear to be warming-up exercises, like the vocalises of a
singer or the limbering-up exercises of an athlete. The repeat signs show that
each exercise is intended to be capable of being played several times;
indeed, Giuliani writes about this Part One “Il segno di ripetizione
può servire a piacimento” (the repeat sign can be considered as a
piacere). Thus dexterity
is achieved. It doesn’t
matter that some exercises have patterns which one would seldom or
never find in the real music of the time, such as nos. 5, or 32, or
60: the patterns serve for exercise, not for performance. Athletes similarly limber up
with exercises which are not necessarily exactly the same things as
they do in their chosen sport.
In fact this Part One casts
interesting light on Giuliani’s right hand fingering. For example, it shows that he was quite ready to use the
right hand ring finger (a) often, probably more ready than Sor would
have been, who recommended that the right hand ring finger be used as
far as possible only for the top note of four-note chords.
The exercises show
technical progression. Thus
no. 1 consists only of chords and uses only the right hand thumb,
index, and middle fingers; then come arpeggios and from no. 7 the ring
finger (a) is introduced. Then
come various patterns more and more to increase agility, while the
left hand at first stays always in the same two positions. From no. 55 onwards the thumb
is more exercised, while only after the first 100 exercises are any
extra notes introduced in the left hand.
Among many other points of
interest are the following.
In no. 17 Giuliani
alternates thumb and index finger only, where he could easily have
used other fingers as well.
In no. 95, notes on
contiguous strings played downwards are played by m i, but when they
are played upwards they are not played by i m as one might perhaps
expect today, but by p i even on high strings (the ancient technique
which Sor also would have prescribed).
In no. 96 we have a
forerunner of what we today call tremolo, in no. 100 also reversed.
In no. 97 p and i play
alternately on a single bass string (as Sor would also have
In no. 101 Giuliani shows
willingness to use a where he could have used m.
In no. 109 the notes on the
top string are played by m i only (no a).
In no. 112 the notation in
the second bar is just a notational convention; it should be played
simply as triplets.
In no. 114, in the middle
of the first bar, the two chords in the upper part are the same, but
it is prescribed to change the right hand fingering (from i and m to m
The final chord of each
exercise has a slash through it which probably means to arpeggiate the
chord. Possibly it means
to play all five notes with the right hand thumb, but that is not
certain. (In the
original edition the slash is absent in nos. 1-10 and 111-120, but I
have restored it here.)
Part Two, for the left hand
Part Two consists of
sixteen exercises for the left hand.
First come four exercises in C major, one each in thirds,
sixths, octaves and tenths; then four more in thirds, sixths, octaves
and tenths in each of G major, D major, and A major. The exercises are by no means
the same for all the keys, and sometimes they are quite musical, for
example at the end of no. 5.
At the beginning of Part
Two, Giuliani specifically writes (the original is in Italian, French
and German): “In all the examples in this second part, the bass
notes, that is to say the notes which have their stems pointing
downwards, are plucked with the thumb, and all the other (upper) notes
with the right hand index finger.” So Giuliani has composed this
Part to give exercise in this technique of alternating the right hand
thumb and index finger right up to the top strings. To alter this and use other
right hand fingers as some modern editions do, is fine for modern
technique but it destroys the specific purpose for which Giuliani
wrote this section. Moreover,
the alternation of thumb and index finger is easy, even up to the
first and second strings, and in my own experience clear and
The emphasis in Part Two is
on the left hand, while the right hand is very simple, playing all the
notes with the thumb and index finger only.
Part Three, ornaments etc.
The elements which Giuliani
has chosen to spotlight here no doubt reflect something of his own
style of playing.
The first, no. 1, is the
holding or prolonging of notes which he calls “Della tenuta del
tuono”, the holding of the sound (not quite the same thing as
“sostenuto” which Giuliani could have used but chose not to,
perhaps because it has stylistic implications; by “tenuta del suono”
I think Giuliani merely meant giving notes their full value).
Then, no. 2, “dello
smorzato” which I have translated as damping. This is practically the same
as staccato, although I have not used that word because Giuliani did
not use it here but used it in no. 3, so that perhaps he did not mean
the two to be quite the same: perhaps example 2 is for damped sounds,
and example 3 for truly staccato ones.
Giuliani does not discuss the matter in enough detail for us to
The rest are ornaments.
In no. 1, Giuliani’s
right hand fingering is certainly unusual in places, for example at
bars 15 and 18 where we see three consecutive notes all plucked with
the index finger, which would not be normal today. But it is carefully notated
and no doubt has its purpose.
In nos. 4 to 7 and 9 the
original edition writes in every case appoggiatura, but some of the
auxiliary notes are written as what we today would call acciaccaturas. Because the detailed meaning
of ornaments is a thorny part of performance practice, I have
preferred to use Giuliani’s own terminology rather than risk
confusing matters with modern terms which may or may not mean the same
thing. Anyone interested
can read the necessary works on performance practice of the time.
In no. 4, the instructions
are not one hundred per cent literal, because the o in bar 7 means
that the finger here cannot fall like a hammer because it is an open
In no. 9 the ornament as
Giuliani says is indeed the same as the ornament in no. 5 and
performed the same way. So
why has he given it a separate piece?
Perhaps because this ornament was indeed very common, and
indeed probably was often improvised without being written, so it was
important enough to be given a new and separate piece.
No. 11, in the Italian text
at its head in the original edition, is headed “Dello Strisciato”. Giuliani spells out that the
technique here is like portamento in singing, where the singer makes
each intervening note distinct. That
is not the same as glissando, where the singer goes from the beginning
note to the ending note without articulating each intervening note
separately. Glissando is
not mentioned and is not the correct term to use here. (It is true that the French
text has “Du Glissé”, but on the one hand as Giuliani was Italian
it is likely to be the Italian text which is the original, and also in
French no obvious translation for strisciato presents itself other
Part Four, twelve progressive lessons
The work concludes with
twelve progressive lessons, suitable for beginners, none of them
seriously difficult. The
last one has a long final part or cadenza which serves to bring the
whole work to an end.
Part Four in the original
edition has no fingering at all.
Lesson 3: note that the
first note of each group in the bass in bar 1 (and in subsequent
groups later) is a quaver not a semiquaver (a 16th note not a 32nd
Lesson 3, bar 18: the third
note is F natural in the original; one might be tempted to change it
to a G, but a comparison with bars 21 and 26 shows that that would not
necessarily be correct. In
this edition it has been left unchanged.
Lesson 9, last chord: the
bass A shows that Giuliani intended the low F to be stopped with the
left hand thumb. This can
easily be changed if desired.
Lesson 10, bar 21: the
sharp on the last note is editorial.
Lesson 12: bar 15 is to be
played at the 7th position.
Lesson 12: in bar 17 the
last note is E in the first edition and D in a second edition which
Artaria produced. I have
preferred to put F, on musical grounds.
48. Esercizio per la
chitarra, contenente 24 pezzi della maggiore difficoltà, diversi
preludi, passaggi, ed assolo (Exercise
for the guitar, containing 24 pieces of the greatest difficulty,
including various preludes, passaggi, and solo pieces).
Like op. 1, this work comes from that
tremendous period in Giuliani’s life when he had just arrived in
Vienna. It is brilliant
in every way: every piece is intensely musical, uses the resources of
the instrument fully, and every note counts, nothing is wasted. Consider, for example, the
subtlety and beauty of no. 15. The Esercizio was first published in Vienna in
It is extremely interesting
that the original title-page says that the pieces are not merely
exercises as solo pieces, but that they include “preludi, passaggi…”,
that is to say, music which can be played as a prelude to something
else, or as a “passage” from one item to another. Passaggio is a technical term
which is practically untranslatable, meaning a piece which shows some
conspicuous or brilliant feature, modulation, or ornamentation or
The original edition gives
quite a lot of position indications and some open strings, but no
other fingering. This is
an economical type of fingering.
For example, the first note of no. 11 is marked “II”, which
must mean that the note is to be stopped with the fourth finger on the
fifth string, because otherwise there would be no purpose in the
Usually in this music a dot
on a note does not mean staccato, but rather not slurred. It usually appears on a note
which immediately precedes or follows a group of slurred notes and
distinguishes it from them, to indicate that it is to be plucked
separately and not slurred. A
fine example of its use is in op. 48 no. 4, where the distinction
between slurred and unslurred notes is very carefully notated and is
essential to the interpretation of the piece. Sometimes the dot becomes a
wedge, but whereas in some piano music of the time there is indeed a
distinction between dot and wedge, in the case of this music of
Giuliani there appears to be no difference in sense: rather, it seems
that it was just a vagary of engravers’ practice.
The dynamics in opus 48 are
interesting and very carefully notated, very practical and specific. See for example the carefully
marked crescendo and decrescendo in no. 2, and the sfs in no. 6 and in
no. 7 bars 16-19.
No. 1 bar 13, the first sf
has been added editorially.
No. 4 bar 14: an error in
the slurring has been corrected.
(For details see the Tecla facsimile edition).
No. 5 bar 9: in the third
group of notes, the second and sixth notes were A in the original
edition and have here been altered to B. In the fourth group of notes,
the third and fifth notes (E) might be conjectured to be D as they are
in the following bar, but E is in fact probably correct.
No. 5 the slash in the
final chord may mean arpeggiated (cf. op. 1 Part One).
No. 6 is very like Op. 1,
Part One, no. 17, which is specifically marked to be played with the
right hand thumb and index finger only, so this piece also is probably
intended to be played in that way.
No. 14, bars 7-8: this
passage, going up to the very top of the compass and then down to the
bass, reminds one of violin music.
No. 16 is very similar to a
passage at the end of the guitar part of the first movement of
Giuliani’s first concerto in A op. 30.
No. 17 bar 52: the last
note is G in the original and is here changed to B.
No. 22 bar 3: the first two
bass notes in the original are joined together with a beam across the
beat. One can see the
purpose of this: given that the first of the two notes is marked sf,
the idea is to group the two notes together. This also occurs at bars 7-10,
with an especially careful beaming at the end of bar 10. Although this is against
modern practice, I have decided to keep it because of its fine economy
of purpose. (The group in
the bass from bar 3 to bar 4 is two separate notes in the original but
I have beamed them together like the rest)
No. 24 bar 10: the words
“col dito pollice” mean with the right hand thumb. This is too obvious to apply to the bass notes. Therefore it applies to the
upper notes, that is to say in this bar play the C (the first upper
note) with the right hand thumb and thereafter all the Cs in this bar,
and similarly in the next bars.
In no. 24 the final bars
are long drawn out, perhaps to bring this collection to an end as a
whole. This would give
support to the idea of performing op. 48 as a whole. These final bars are rather
similar to, and in the same key as, the end of Giuliani's Grande Ouverture, op. 61
of a few years later.
51. XVIII Lecons
This collection of simple pieces was first
published in Vienna probably early in 1814, that is to say just a few
months after Giuliani’s much more advanced op. 48 of 1813. So one can say that like Sor, Giuliani moved in his
composition from the hard to the easier. Still, some of the pieces here
are quite pleasant, for example no. 5 or no. 7.
Op. 51 almost never rises
above the first and second positions, except only for no. 18 which
goes much higher. It has
almost no fingering or position indications, perhaps because most of
the pieces are so easy. No.
18, again exceptionally, begins in the 7th position.
Again it has interesting
dynamics and careful placing of sf.
No. 2: the structure of
this piece in the original edition seems to show that two bars are
missing. In order to
remedy this, I have inserted two bars, which are the bars numbered
13-14 in this edition. If
anyone wishes to remove them, they can do so.
No. 9 bar 10 the first
upper note was C in the original and is here changed to A.
No. 13 here also in the
original edition the bars do not add up properly. Everything is fine up to bar 16, and also from bar 37 to
the end, but in between the number of bars does not seem to be
correct. However, no
obvious error is present and no obvious solution presents itself.
No. 13 last bar: the
spacing of the chord implies that Giuliani intended the low F in the
final bar to be stopped with the left hand thumb.
No. 18 ends with a
flourish, to bring the collection to an end.
98. Studi Dilettevoli
ossia Raccolta di vari Pezzi Originali
(Delightful studies, or, Collection of various original pieces)
This collection of eight easy pieces was
first published in Vienna by Artaria and advertised in the Wiener
Zeitung on 29 October 1817. It
was reviewed in the Wiener Zeitung für Kunst, Literatur, Theater
und Mode on 5 March 1818 as follows: “[Op. 98] enthält acht
Uebungsstücke, die, ohne ausserordentliche Schwierigkeiten
darzubieten, doch auch noch für Geübtere ein angenehmes Studium seyn
werden.” (quoted from Heck, The Birth…, II, 110). (“[Op. 98] contains eight
exercise pieces, which, without offering any unusual difficulties,
will still serve as a pleasant study even for more experienced
Op. 98 is a collection of
eight easy pieces not much different from very many other easy pieces
published by Giuliani in his lifetime, and they are included here in
this present book not so much because of their musical nature as
studies, but rather for the sake of completeness because they bear on
their title-page the word “Studi”.
No. 2 bar 27: the first
note after the chord is A in the original, apparently an error and
altered here to G.
No. 7 the original from bar
36 writes out the first part again (complete with repeats).
No. 8, as in op. 48, here
also in this much more modest collection, in the last piece, the final
bars are long drawn out, perhaps to bring this collection to an end as
100. Etudes instructives,
faciles, et agréables … contenant un Recueil de Cadences, Caprices,
Rondeaux, et Préludes (Instructive,
easy, and agreeable studies … containing a collection of cadences,
caprices, rondos, and preludes)
This work contains 24 pieces. The title calls the entire
collection Etudes, or studies, but in fact the work is divided into
three sections: Cadenze (cadences), Capricci e Rondo (caprices and
rondos), and Preludi (preludes).
Nos. 1-9 are cadenze, nos. 10-14 capricci, nos. 15-16 rondos,
and nos. 17-24 preludi. The
cadenze have a coherent harmonic structure as a group of pieces (see
below), and so do the capricci.
However, apart from nos. 15
and 16 which are clearly rondos, there is often not a very clear
distinction between the various pieces when considered as individual
pieces. Even the preludi
nos. 17-24 are also called cadenze: Preludi ad uso cadenza
servendosone avanti di cominciare un pezzo di Musica (preludes to be
used as cadences, to be played before beginning a piece of music). It is interesting and unusual
in Giuliani’s music that the preludes nos. 17, 18, 20, and 21 have
no barlines and are to be played a piacere. Cadenze, capricci, and preludi
are all unusual terms in Giuliani’s work.
The ambitious structure of
this work, its divisions, and its unusual contents, all show that this
was intended to be a major work.
The high rank of the dedicatee, Princess Menschikoff, and the
elaborate nature of the original title-page, also show that this was
regarded as an important work of Giuliani’s.
The work was first
published in Vienna by Springer and advertised in the Wiener
Zeitung on 8 January 1819. It
was reprinted by Artaria from the original plates but with a new plate
number (4650) much later, in about 1833.
In the first section,
Cadenze, nos. 1-9, it may be observed that all the pieces except one
(No. 5) move from a major key to its relative minor: No. 1, C to a;
No. 2, G to e; No. 3, D to b; No. 4, A to f sharp; No. 6, F to d; No.
7, B flat to g; No. 8, E flat to c; and no. 9, A flat to f. No. 5 is entirely in E major. So, on the face of it, it
might seem that perhaps there has been an error of printing. Heck suggested (The
Birth…, II, 113), that it may be that the publisher “destroyed
what must have been Giuliani’s original grouping by interchanging
No. 5 with No. 9 in the first edition; that gesture has been carried
through in the later and modern editions”. So it is tempting to
“restore” the original. However,
to do so would not be straightforward, for if we remove no. 5 in order
to make a coherent group of eight Cadenze, where are we then going to
put it? Surely not among
the Capricci, for they also have a coherent harmonic sequence: No. 10,
C major; No. 11, A minor; No. 12, G major; No. 13, E minor; No. 14, D
major. If only the
troublesome No. 5 were in B minor!
Then it would fit well into place. But it is not.
So Heck’s hypothesis that
nos. 5 and 9 were interchanged by the publisher does not work out
neatly. All one can say
is that No. 5 does not fit well into the first group of Cadenze. So it is best not to make any
changes when editing the work, and none have been made in this
edition. However, anyone
performing the Cadenze as a group may wish to omit No. 5.
No. 6, bars 29 and 30: the
last note in each bar was F in the original and is here changed to D.
No. 23 has no tempo
indication in the original. [Allegro]
is editorially suggested.
The last piece, No. 24, has
a grand final flourish to bring the work as a whole to an end, as in
opp. 1, 48, 51, and 98.
No. 24 bar 3: after the
bass note, the first three notes in the original are CFA and have here
been changed to FAC. (Also
in bar 4).
139. 24 Prime Lezioni,
Parte prima (24 First
Lessons, Part 1)
The title-page states that this work
consists of 24 pieces and is in four parts: 24 Prime Lezioni
progressive per chitarra sola, divise in Quattro parti, per uso degli
amatori che desiderano di perfezionarsi senza l’ajuto del Maestro”
(“24 first progressive lessons for guitar solo, divided into four
parts, for the use of those amateurs who wish to learn without the aid
of a teacher”. However, even if there ever were a full 24 pieces in
the work, only these six are known to have been published, by Ricordi
in Milan in about 1840, that is some eleven years after the
composer’s death. The
late date of publication must cause doubts regarding their
authenticity, and the musical style also does not seem typical of
Giuliani. The opus
number, 139, may in all likelihood have been assigned by the publisher
and not by Giuliani.
No. 3 has no tempo
indication in the original.
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Copyright 2002 by Tecla Editions. Errors and omissions excepted.