Preface to Volume 18, 3 B

Although the present volume contains mainly fragments and sketches of choral works and canons, it also includes a number of complete works which were discovered after the publication of Volume 18 A and which are included as an appendix and in the two Canon sections.

The first group of works consists of choral fragments dating from Schoenbergs early beginnings as a composer up to the time of Friede auf Erden, Op. 13, which was not only his first complete choral work, but also the first such work to be given an opus number. (Only the dating of fragment 10 remains a matter of some uncertainty.) By far the most important is fragment 5, Darthulas Grabgesang, a setting of an Ossianic poem by Johann Gottfried Herder. Composed in 1903, it is close in style to the Gurrelieder.

A second sizeable complex is formed by the canons contained both in the present volume and in Volume 18 B 1, including the relevant sketches and incomplete canonic sketches. The latter are sufficiently numerous to warrant a volume to themselves and would, indeed, have been so treated had the editors known, when they began work, how much material still remained to be discovered. More and more new canonic sketches have come to light in recent years, as well as new sources for canons which are already published. With the thirty-five complete canons in Volume 18 A, the canons of Op. 28, the eleven Goethe canons (both complete and incomplete), the sixty-six canonic sketches with two further complete canons and the three complete canons included as an appendix here, more than 100 separate pieces have now been made available. These have generally survived in several sources, which overlap in a variety of ways: sketches of complete canons, for example, include original drafts which are not taken up elsewhere. It was the task of the present editors to achieve some sense of order from the 100 or more individual sheets and folios and thus make them available for further study. In many cases it was possible to establish an approximate dating, and the (approximate) chronology which consequently emerged bears witness to Schoenbergs lifelong interest in this contrapuntal form.

A detailed description of the source material relating to these canons is necessary on account of the fact that only in this way is it possible to gain an overview of the material. Since many of the sketch sheets have not been numbered, such a descriptive approach allows us, in general, to identify the individual piece in question, while a comparison between the variant readings serves not only to indicate which sources belong together but also to date them. The differences between the various sources mostly prove to be inconsequential.

Although both editors worked together closely in preparing the present volume for publication, their individual responsibilities were divided as follows: Quellenbeschreibung (Description of the Source Material), Textkritische Anmerkungen (Critical Commentary), the transcription of the sketches and fragments, and the general editing: Tadeusz Okuljar ; Einführung/Dokumente (Introduction/Documentation), Quellenbeschreibung (Description of the Source Material), Textkritische Anmerkungen (Critical Commentary), Quellenbewertung (Evaluation of the Source Material), Zum Text (Concerning the Text), Datierung (Dating), Skizzen (Sketches): Martina Sichardt.

We are grateful to our two colleagues, Nikos Kokkinis, whose expert advice was a source of constant encouragement to us, and Dorothee Schubel, whose assistence in checking out individual problems along the way enhanced the volume and whose reading of the final text helped to eliminate unseen errors. We are additionally grateful to our colleagues at the Arnold Schoenberg Institute in Los Angeles, and in particular to R. Wayne Shoaf, who patiently answered the numerous queries which we addressed to him.

Berlin, December 1990
Tadeusz Okuljar, Martina Sichardt