Artistic Score Engraving — January 2023 Newsletter


Dear all,

Happy New Year and welcome to the January 2023 edition of the Artistic Score Engraving newsletter. I hope with all my heart that you have been able to spend these holidays with those dearest to you and how you most wanted to. General-events-wise, not so much has changed or evolved here in Italy. We always have restrictions on the heating—of course only for those who cannot control their system—, but I’m deeply grateful to a composer who, knowing how much we were suffering here, send me a hot water bottle (or bag) to keep me warm.

Music-wise, I have plenty of news, so better to get started!

What have I been up to?

New editions

Only one edition came out in December, in the form of the Eight Grand Studies for cello, Op. 44, by Friedrich August Kummer. This is now available for purchase, and you can both read the deep-dive article, and watch the promotional video. These are fascinating and challenging pieces, which I hope you will enjoy!

Other two editions are in the works as I’m writing, and more existing ones will be revisited because of what I’m about to announce below.

Yes, we print!

A distribution deal was finally signed in mid-December, and it will involve physical distribution of my editions worldwide! To clarify, this doesn’t mean that you will find my editions in music shops, but that, wherever you are in the world, you will be able to order a physical copy and get it delivered to your doorstep, and at a very favourable price. The reason I am not going to distribute in shops for now is elementary: each step beyond me wants its cut, and, beyond the first one, it will be a bloodbath. The deal I have reached asks that I pay for printing upfront, which means I will have to thread carefully on each move. An alternative would have been something like J. Peppers, in the US, where they take care of everything after the initial $99 fee. The cut they take, though, is just so big that only a publisher with hundreds of title could afford it. Besides, they would only deliver to the US, which would severely limit my options.

I will write a blog post on the process that brought up to this deal because I think people should know how these things work. Especially, they should know how printing and distributing companies who promote “print-on-demand”, or “make your business soar” in titanic fonts are just there to screw you. Unless, you get it, you already have hundreds of titles available.

Speculation is not a novelty these days, but I had hoped, possibly naively, that this could have been any different.

The first edition to go to print will be Boccherini’s Cello Sonata in B-flat major, Op. Post. At this link, you can find it in the usual way. Now, look in the product’s description. At the top, you should find the following phrase:

For the printed copy, follow this link

This will immediately bring you to the page where the physical copy can be purchased.

Updated editions

After this, Dotzauer Op. 52 will be printed, since it has gone through the reviewing process. On the digital side, this edition has a nice new addendum, as I have created a new version enriched with my fingering and bowing suggestions. It will live in the Collectors’ Edition alongside the Klingenberg version. We will see what comes after. I have set up a budget for 2023 to finance printing, and I will reinvest everything I get as income during 2023 up to that budget.

The new edition, and first of 2023, should come out in a week or so, after which I will update and send to print an old edition. This will result in fewer new editions this year, but with a general availability of more editions worldwide.

Engraving works

December has been a full month, and I completed several works, both for composers and for publishers. The aleatoric piano trio I was referring to in the previous newsletter is now reaching its final phase, and, ultimately, I have decided to stay in Sibelius. Unfortunately, my Dorico settings for this publisher are not ready yet.

The opera engraving is going to start soon, and I hope a constant stream of work will keep flowing. 2022 has been a tough year economically, as overall expenses rose about 10%, and my overall income has decreased about 20% from the previous year, mainly thanks to the reduction in teaching hours. We will see where this goes! Definitely, I will not give up the will to fight!

New (and upcoming) editions

I want to avoid boring you with telling everything about the new Kummer edition when you can just read its presentation article (linked above and here). Kummer is such an important figure for me, and I plan to cover his production as well, as time and energy allow! Creating collections of studies is such a time-consuming activity! I could create two or three normal editions in the same time and, so far, it’s not getting too much traction. There are just not enough visitors on my website and on my Gumroad pages, and with everything I do I truly do not have the time to invest in Instagram & TikTok, beside not liking those mediums!

WARNING: next section is not political, but may be misunderstood!

The next edition will be once more for two cellos, in the form of a theme and variations on a Russian theme. The piece was composed in 1815, using a melody which, still now, is the most famous popular Ukrainian song. The piece is called “Aria Russa” simply because, at the time, Ukraine was part of the Russian Empire, and it didn’t exist neither as an official region nor an officially recognised people. This song’s lyrics, though, are not in Russian, rather in a dialect that, in time, would become the Ukrainian language. In time, the song came to Germany, changed the title, and got used by great composers such as Beethoven and Hummel. In the XX century, this song got adopted by the URSS and received a Russian text as well.

This brief explanation to justify the composer for calling the piece “Russian Air”. News on this as I have them!

Next editions

As said above, I will revise one edition after publishing the new piece, and it will either be Piatti’s Caprice 7 for cello and piano or his Quartettino for four cellos. If you have preferences among them, please let me know below in the comments.

Subsequently, a new edition will come, probably again by Piatti. I would like to create some chamber music pieces for an upcoming festival at the end of June, but I need to check with the organisers about what they are looking forward to.

Learning Path

Not too much to report here, as only a few days could be dedicated to learning new skills. I have completed a course on macOS programming where I had only two lessons left. I will continue on that side as soon as possible.

Furthermore, I need to practice my cello more this month as every Dotzauer studies edition must be proofed once more, and adapted for printing.

Bottom line

This month’s edition was shorter than usual, but I think that splitting up content in several articles may be better for everyone. I hope to send you more good news in the coming days and weeks. More blog posts are coming, so keep an eye on this page and possibly subscribe to WordPress notifications. The mailing list will exclusively be used for the weekly gifts and for the newsletter.

The mailing list version of this episode will get the product list with the discounted links. Should you want to join that, feel free to insert your e-mail address here. If you want to actively support what I do, be sure to check out my Gumroad Support Program, it would make a world of difference, and it would greatly reward you while doing it.

Thank you for reading through all this, I sincerely hope that you found something useful in it.

Until next time, all the very best and, once more, HAPPY NEW YEAR!


Michele Galvagno

Published by Michele Galvagno

Professional Musical Scores Designer and Engraver Graduated Classical Musician (cello) and Teacher Tech Enthusiast and Apprentice iOS / macOS Developer Grafico di Partiture Musicali Professionista Musicista classico diplomato (violoncello) ed insegnante Appassionato di tecnologia ed apprendista Sviluppatore iOS / macOS

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