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Later Editions of the Kopprasch Etudes

An overview of familiar editions of Kopprasch

John Ericson

This article is based on materials published in The Horn Call 27, no. 2 (February, 1997).

Probably the most familiar modern edition of the Op. 6 horn etudes of Georg Kopprasch among horn players, published by Carl Fischer in 1939, was first published ca. 1935 by Hofmeister [Culbertson, 78]. This version is marketed as sixty "selected" etudes, which is a misnomer; they are actually the complete Op. 6 of Kopprasch. This edition was edited by Albin Frehse (1878-1973), who primarily added transpositions and breath marks to an edition from the early 1880s by Leipzig hornist and teacher Friedrich Gumpert (1841-1906) [see also Gumpert or Gumbert?]. The original Gumpert edition contains quite a number of changes, when compared to the original edition of 1832/33. These changes, sometimes minor and sometimes quite substantial, even extend to altering the original notes. The following is an example from the original Gumpert edition; note the numerous changes (compared to example 6 in the article The Original Kopprasch Etudes), which include omitting two whole measures of music.

Kopprasch, Etudes, etude no. 10. NOTE: this and all examples which follow in this article are for one horn

Example 1. Kopprasch, Etudes, etude no. 10.

Two other major editions of Kopprasch for horn are easily available today as well. The edition of 50 Kopprasch etudes by Dresden hornist and teacher Oscar Franz (1843-1886) [see also Oscar Franz and Richard Strauss on the Horn in the Late Nineteenth Century], currently published by Southern, is the closest in content to the original Op. 6 etudes, although omitting ten etudes. This edition was first published between 1886 and 1891 [ibid, 72], and was clearly based on the original etudes and not on Gumpert's edition. Notably, Franz gave the opus number of the etudes and the correct first name of Kopprasch; Gumpert misread his first initial as "C." Compare the following etude to the original Kopprasch version (example 6 in the article on The Original Kopprasch Etudes) and note the close similarities.

 Kopprasch, Etudes, Op. 6, etude no. 2 [sic]

Example 2. Kopprasch, Etudes, Op. 6, etude no. 2 [sic].

Finally, the edition of Kopprasch by Viennese hornist and teacher Josef Schantl (1842-1902), originally published in 1903 as volume 4 of his Große theortisch-praktische Horn-Schule and currently available from Wind Music, is a rather heavily edited edition which includes 51 of the Op. 6 etudes and 13 of the Op. 5 etudes [ibid, 75-77]. While, like Franz, his source is clearly the original edition of 1832/33, not Gumpert, Schantl changed the key of a number of etudes, made many changes of articulation, and requested transpositions. Perhaps because of the many changes, however, this edition is probably the most musically satisfying approach to Kopprasch ever published; note his version of etude no. 10.

 Kopprasch, Etudes, etude no. 10

Example 3. Kopprasch, Etudes, etude no. 10.

All of these later editions of Kopprasch were certainly prepared for performance on the valved horn and were particularly intended to be used to teach transposition and finger technique.

UPDATE: My name is in the preface of the new Carl Fischer edition of these etudes, but I donít endorse it. There are quite a number of changes compared to their previous edition, which I personally preferred. It was the standard version most teachers used, but sadly it is now but a memory. The best alternate today is the Chambers edition published by International. It has the same, traditional layout of the music inherited from the Gumpert edition from the early 1880s and works equally well for the student and the teacher used to the original Carl Fischer version.


Tim Byard-Jones, comp., The History of Musical Instruments: Manuals, Tutors and Méthodes [microfilm which includes Gumpert ed. of Kopprasch] (Reading, Berkshire: Research Publications, 1988).

Robert Merrill Culbertson, "The Kopprasch Etudes for Horn," D.M.A. treatise, University of Texas at Austin, 1990.

Damm, Peter, Correspondence, The Horn Call Annual 9 (1997), 5 [confirms dates of Frehse and Franz].

Kopprasch, C. [sic]. 60 ausgewählte Etuden für Waldhorn. Ed. Fr. Gumbert [sic]. 2 vols. Leipzig: Carl Merseburger, n.d.

________. Sixty Selected Studies. Rev. Fr. Gumbert [sic] and Albin Frehse. 2 vols. Boston: Carl Fischer, 1939.

Kopprasch, G. 50 Etudes, Op. 6. Rev. Oscar Franz. San Antonio: Southern, n.d.

Schantl, Joseph. Grosse theoritisch-praktisch Horn-Schule. 4 vols. Heilbronn: C. F. Schmidt, 1903; vol. IV reprinted as Kopprasch, 90 Etudes, Milan Yancich, ed. (Rochester: Wind Music, 1986).

Copyright John Ericson. All rights reserved.


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