Sor: The New Complete Works for Guitar Solo and Guitar Duet: more reviews

The new Tecla re-engraved edition of Sor’s New Complete Works for Guitar, edited by Brian Jeffery, in eleven volumes


Acordes (Spanish magazine, no. 16, 2003): “Una editorial prestigiosa y capaz… una obra largamente esperada.”

Notes, December 2002, has a long review, discussing in detail the methodology of this new edition and its place in a music library.  A few extracts: “On balance, Jeffery gives us a new look at Sor’s guitar music, lightly edited to improve clarity and in a form that is engaging, clean, and legible”.  [About errata:] “Tecla Editions, in this regard, appears to be making every effort to be the very model of the modern music publisher in the age of the Internet”.

Guitart, 2002:
“Recalling the joy of first discovering Fernando Sor through the 20 studies edited by Andres Segovia many years ago, Brian Jeffery’s magnificent re-engraved new complete works of Fernando Sor has brought an elation that was wholly unexpected. Having worked through much of his nine volume facsimile edition in recent years I was surprised at the ease of reading and joy of performance this newly re-engraved edition provides. If you choose to purchase both editions, the ability to reference the original facsimile that directly correlates with the newly engraved works within each volume only adds to its scholarly value. The additional years of study by Dr. Jeffery have also garnered new insights that are revealed in this new edition.
Brian’s adherence to using only Sor’s original fingerings is masterful in pulling the player directly into the mind of the composer. Sor’s logic and inventiveness in thematic presentation seems to fall naturally under the fingers. An editor whose work is driven by the need for clarity and authenticity should be commended.
I have yet to bring pencil to paper in any of the volumes, although it may be advisable for students, who will greatly benefit from this much needed resource. Additionally, the ability to play through a composer’s entire oeuvre chronologically allows an insight into the creative process that is invaluable.
Each volume is beautifully realized with large, clear print and bindings that provide for flat placement on the music stand. New to this edition are Sor’s duets in score form allowing for greater precision by providing both players the ability to read from the same score during preliminary practice sessions.
The Urtext provided for each work and presented at the beginning of each volume is a glimpse into the life of this 19th century master with historic and analytical insights into the man and his music (Tecla also has a highly respected biography, Fernando Sor, Composer and Guitarist).”
John Martin, Guitart, 2002

“Just a note to say how useful the new re-engraved edition of Sor’s complete works [The New Complete Works for Guitar] is proving. Until I started using it, I hadn’t realised how much the sheer difficulty of deciphering some sections of the Sor facsimile editions was contributing to the overall awkwardness of performing some of the more elaborate pieces (unless I was prepared to invest a great deal of time in memorising them). Preparing the editions must have taken a huge effort, but it’s much appreciated by me.” (Paul Sparks, June 2002)

“It has become a truism that the gap between early and modern music is closing.  For most music from Beethoven on, the use of modern instruments is still the norm.  But early 19th century guitar music feels more distant, and probably benefits more from performance on an early instrument than Beethoven’s piano sonatas benefit from a fortepiano.  So a new complete edition of Sor’’s guitar music comes within our area of interest.  None of the editings that so often disfigure modern editions of guitar music are added…   The division into volumes follows that of the facsimile edition, which is sensible.  The new edition is well presented and opens flat on the music stand.  Players who prefer the transcribed texts can rest assured that what is given here has suffered the minimum interpretation (and indeed, facsimile players may like to see how the editor has handled problematic passages) and the commentaries on the pieces are both scholarly and practical.” (Early Music Review, April 2002)

“Regarding the editions, the quality of paper, printing, and editorial commentary is exceptional. The scores are bold and neat, and very easy to read (of course, not all are so easy to PLAY). I believe this is the first time ever that the complete works of Sor, clearly one of the top guitar composers of the 19th century, have been available in one place with an accurate Urtext. This was quite an endeavour, and truly a watershed event in guitar history.” (A customer on receiving the new edition, March 2002)

“The new Sor is great.  I am using it daily.” (A music department professor, April 2002.)

“I must tell you of the great joy this new edition has brought to me thus far. The editions bring into full light his great genius and the work done by you and your associates is breathtaking.” (a guitarist in the USA, April 2002).

“Today I have received my order. Congratulations for your very good job. It’s really a very splendid edition. It has already taken a good place in my library.” (A customer on receiving the new edition, March 2002)

“By the way, I own several volumes of the edition myself, and use them regularly. Despite the occasional misprint, I much prefer them to the edited and fingered versions otherwise available!” (a customer, November 2002).

“I just received the Fernando Sor’s NEW Complete Works for Guitar [volume 1]. Congratulations for this wonderful work.” (a customer in the USA)

“Yesterday I (a student of guitar, from Zurich/Switzerland) bought volume 1 of FERNANDO SOR, The New Complete Works for Guitar. It’s just the best Sor-edition!!!! Thank you, Brian Jeffery, thank you, Tecla!!” (a customer, November 1998)


Copyright 2003 by Tecla Editions. Errors and omissions excepted.