Adding fingering to a piano score

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Zeyar Shwe
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Adding fingering to a piano score

Postby Zeyar Shwe » Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:27 am

After discovering that I cannot submit Hassler's 6 Leichte Sonaten because E Doflein has added the fingering to the original score, I have discovered a way of making money. I will download a score with no fingering, for instance Leopold Mozart's Notebook for Nanerl from IMSLP, add fingering after playing it through once and then publish it as Notebook for Nanerl (fingered by Z Shwe) and if somebody upload my book on IMSLP, I will sue the IMSLP for copyright infringement although I originally got the score from IMSLP, hehehe.

Well thinking about it, I can download any piano score from IMSLP, and even if it was originally fingered by the composer himself, I can change a few fingering here and there ( the original composer is no longer protected by copyright law since he was dead and was buried a century ago) and publish it as a new edition with revised fingering and sell it on Ebay cheaply and make money. No great investment, no need to print books, I can just sell the PDF on Ebay.

If there is a copyright law that protects the fingering, the law is an ass.

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Re: Adding fingering to a piano score

Postby Carolus » Wed Sep 14, 2016 2:03 am

That might be an interesting case to take to court. The problem with fingerings is that there is not a lot of case law to go on, so it's all a matter of how 'original' a fingering can be (for countries whose "threshold of originality" is high) or how much 'sweat of the brow' was involved (for those countries who hold to more of a 'sweat-of-the-brow' doctrine). As I mentioned on the wiki talk-page, Dorflein added more than just fingerings. The whole question of edition copyrights is an extremely complicated and vexing one in which we are to a certain extent having to give educated guesses. The case law on the issue is not clear and there are conflicting decesions even in the same country (US for example), without even getting into the conflicting standards mentioned above (originality vs. sweat-of-the-brow).

Henle, by the way, has done very nicely by creating "urtext" editions (keep in mind that "urtext" is really a marketing term, not a legal one) which are very well-done re-engravings to which new fingerings (often by famous artists) have been added. So, your idea is not a new one by any means.

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Re: Adding fingering to a piano score

Postby coulonnus » Sun Nov 06, 2016 7:38 am

Why don't publishers meditate on,_Michel_de) around p.91? You find basic chords with two fingerings: for small or large hands. Then the best fingering is no fingering at all. :lol:

I have already removed fingerings in a Henle score to make it acceptable on imslp.

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