Musical compositions are often identified through a cataloguing system described by

To help identify and organise pieces of music by a certain composer, individual compositions or sets of works are typically offered an “Opus” number. The word “opus” is Latin and indicates “work” or “work of art”, regularly abbreviated as “Op.”, or “Opp.” in the plural. The practice of assigning an “opus number” to a work-related or collection of works as soon as the job-related or collection was publimelted began in the seventeenth century. Opus numbers were not usually provided in chronological order and did not necessarily represent as soon as a work was actually composed. Unpubliburned works often were left without opus numbers. From the 1800s onwards, Beethstove in specific assigned opus numbers to individual works and sets (including piano pieces, songs and various other brief works) as they were completed and published: low opus numbers show beforehand works, while high opus numbers (for example, the Piano Sonata Opus 110) are functions written and publiburned at the finish of Beethoven’s life. Works published posthumously were also assigned high opus numbers, while some functions were not provided an opus number at all, and were later catalogued in the 1950s as WoO (Werke ohne opus/”works without opus number”). These include the 3 ‘Electoral’ piano sonatas, created once Beethcooktop was a very young guy, which are not generally consisted of via the primary body of the 32 Piano Sonatas (Opus 2 to Opus 111).

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Ralph Kirkpatrick


Not all music has an opus number. The music of Bach is provided a ‘BWV’ number, which is an abbreviation of “Bach-Werke-Verzeichnis” (literally, “magazine of Bach’s works”), and was the cataloguing device for Bach’s music offered by Wolfgang Smieder in the 1950s.

Similarly, Mozart’s music is catalogued through “K numbers” from the name of the cataloguer, Köchel. A low K number suggests a item written as soon as Mozart was incredibly young, while a high number suggests a piece composed at the end of his life. Some world recognize the functions by their K numbers alone (a frifinish of mine has a amazing expertise of Mozart’s functions by their individual K numbers).

Mozart: Piano Concerto No. 27 in B-Flat Major, Op. 17, K. 595 Ralph Kirkpatrick catalogued the countless functions of Domenico Scarlatti in a facsimile edition, and so these pieces are also offered a K number, commonly written “Kk” to identify it from Mozart’s Köchel number. To make matters slightly even more confmaking use of, Scarlatti’s works additionally have a “Longo number” after Alessandro Longo’s edition for the piano. The Kk and also Longo numbers carry out not correspond, which deserve to make identifying a details work-related by Scarlatti tricky; fortunately, tright here are tables of Kk and also Longo numbers obtainable digital to assist settle such discrepancies.

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Scarlatti: Keyboard Sonata in D Minor, K.141/L.422/P.271 Confused? Read on…..

Haydn’s functions are generally described by their Hob or Hoboken numbers, after the cataloguer Anthony von Hoboken’s classification, though some have actually Opus numbers alone. The functions are likewise grouped right into categories, for instance, I for symphonies, or XVI for the piano sonatas. The Piano Sonatas have actually both a job-related number and a Hob. number, which, prefer the works of Scarlatti, make identification even more confmaking use of.

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Schubert’s functions have both Opus and “Deutsch” numbers (after Otto Ewealthy Deutsch’s catalogue). The first collection of Impromptus for piano, for example, are both Opus 90 and D899. (I tend to describe Schubert’s piano music by its D number, bereason that is just how I have actually constantly well-known it.)

Music experts and academics regularly additionally describe the “autographed score” or “autograph version”. These are original scores, composed out by the composer, or transcribed by an assistant, and represent the initially finimelted variation, and are necessary historic documents in the scholarship of a certain composer’s functions (over the years, music is based on editing; in current years, scholars have actually gone back to autographed editions to much better understand the composer’s original intentions or to settle inquiries of attribution or interpretation). Very sometimes, an original autographed score will concerned light, which was previously thought to be lost, or non-existent, which have the right to create many excitement amongst music specialists and academics, and also fetching considerable sums at auction. In 2009, researchers unearthed 2 pieces of music thneed to have actually been composed by Mozart when he was still a boy, and also in 2012 a ‘new’ item by Mozart was premiered, after an autographed notebook was uncovered in the attic of a home in Austria.