IMSLP talk:Categorization/Project Members/archive1


Although the tagging system should be fairly straightforward in most cases, there will always be some works where the correct tags may not be obvious right away. If you aren't sure then copy the title of the page you're dealing to the list below (and, if you like, say what the problem is), and leave the page untagged for now. Someone will try to come up with a response as soon as possible, giving what they believe to be the appropriate tag, and the reasons why.


according to Grove the term had varying usages over time, but in Merula's case it's almost certainly a form of viola da gamba, so I'd say go with "vdg" — P.davydov 23:55, 4 January 2010 (UTC)
Yes its a gamba, but it's the big member of the family, and vlne gets used as an abbrev. for it whereas the smaller gambas seem to usually get shortened to vdg or vl da gamba). In the Biber scores for example, most of the string parts are abbreviated vl, vla, and indicating vdg for the violone when it is functioning as the bass of the strings would be confusing. Philip Legge @ © talk 00:00, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, Philip. I'll look into it further tomorrow when I'm a little less bleary-eyed :-) — P.davydov 00:19, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
My previous contribution may not have been as focussed as it could have been. The normal function of the vlne is basically the same as cello/double bass, reinforcement of the continuo at 8-foot or 16-foot pitch (depending on the type of violone, both the bass viol or contrabass viol are sometimes called violone), and usually such a part dubbed "violone" won't entail soloistic material. Taking the example of a solo viola da gamba sonata with vlne specified on the bc part should not be 2vdg bc. To classify vlne in with the vdg is akin to suggesting a cb (or vc) is the same as a vl or vla. A subsequent problem is the classification of the tenor, alto, and treble members viol family generically as vdg – a gambist searching for solo repertoire with the vdg tag may be disappointed to find no more info as to which instrument in the family is required. Probably it will be best to wait to see how many works have been tagged gamba before jumping in. Regards, PML @ © talk 9:10, 6 January 2010 (AEDT)
The violone has cropped up again (Sonata VIII from Sonatæ tam auris quam aulis servientes (Biber, Heinrich Ignaz Franz von)), so it now merits its own tag: "vlne" — P.davydov 13:51, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
And in exactly the context I had mentioned (and the Biber worklist amplifies that, where vle is the abbreviation used). So now we can scratch our heads over the tenor viol, the violino piccolo, the baryton, and other assorted stringed instruments, eh? Not forgetting the arpeggione... Philip Legge @ © talk 21:02, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
Actually the arpeggione has already made it onto the list. But we won't just let any old instrument through the door. They'll have to establish their credentials first ;-) — P.davydov 21:54, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Cello Sonata (Handel, George Frideric)

Currently listed as cello, piano, which of course didn't exist in Handel's time. It has been recorded with piano (most notable example Jacqueline du Pre with Daniel Barenboim), but there are also more authentic performances. Originally viola da gamba, so it's an arrangement of sorts anyway. General consensus, change to hpd? Users searching for sonatas with either hpd or pf could search for "instrument + keyboard"? Actually, this will affect all Baroque sonatas that have piano listed, so can we make it a general discussion about Baroque sonatas?

Did Handel write the piece for cello, or is it a much later arrangement of a work elsewhere for viola da gamba? — P.davydov 21:45, 4 January 2010 (UTC)
The transcriber was Friedrich Grutzmacher, 1832-1903 so, yes, much later
Ought it then be listed as an arrangement of the original work (assuming we already have it)? — P.davydov 22:00, 4 January 2010 (UTC)
I can't tell whether we have it, because we have some of Handel's Sonatas in sets, and I'll have to download and compare. It will help rather to deal with it tomorrow when I can get to my library's full set of Handel's works. At the moment I'm leaning toward the following solution: whether we have it or not, it should be listed under the original title, because someone may eventually upload the gamba sonata and then we will have two separate pages for the same work. I will also be able to get the HWV number tomorrow which will help identification of such works. I also can't tell until I see the original whether it would be continuo or just harpsichord (sometimes with the low instruments, the continuo is not so necessary). Generally if a work isn't an arrangement I should change to bc or hpd. However, all the Baroque cello sonatas were probably originally for gamba, so these will have to be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. Will get back . . .

Late (Guzman, Juan Samuel)

I've left a note on the composer's user page, so hopefully he'll get back to us on that... — P.davydov 23:43, 4 January 2010 (UTC)


It isn't in the list of terms recognised by the MLA or Grove, so we should probably ignore it — P.davydov 23:39, 4 January 2010 (UTC)
OK. Thanks for being around to help with everything! KGill talk email 23:47, 4 January 2010 (UTC)

Original Instruments

Taking this out of the middle of the previous section. For early music, there are often multiple modes of performance for individual parts - e.g. historically informed performance on original instruments, or the use of analogous modern instruments when one doesn't have any other choice. If you don't have cornettos and sackbuts, you make do with tpt and trb. So for say a gamba sonata with continuo, would you tag it as "sonatas; vdg bc ; vc pf" to cover these both bases? Also, in the discussion above the assumption is the keyboard instrument is a harpsichord, when in terms of baroque or earlier "continuo" is a little bit more inclusive as a term, applying to all sorts of instruments that can perform the support function, and usually (but not always! some minor exceptions to rule...) implying at least one keyboard instrument (which might be hpd, org, ...) Philip Legge @ © talk 00:12, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
I'm aware that there are all sorts of pitfalls for the unwary here, and so we're using the orchestration specified by the composer in the score, insofar as it can be ascertained. So in your example that would be "sonatas ; vdg bc", regardless of whether modern performances favour cello and piano, 2 kazoos and harmonium, etc. The tag doesn't replace the information in the "Instrumentation" field, where more detail can be given — P.davydov 00:27, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
True. But if you've got the original score (e.g. vdg bc) and a transcription for modern analogues (vc pf), would you include both? That was the point of contention with the Handel "Cello Sonata". Applying the rule "what the composer specified in the score" assumes that "what's in the score" is actually what the composer put there ;-) Philip Legge @ © talk 01:35, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
I think you're being a little mischevious here Philip :-) The "Cello Sonata" by Handel is a later arrangement by someone else of an original work by Handel, and should have been placed listed under "Arrangements and Transcriptions" on the page for that original work (as soon as we can establish what that was!). As Feldmahler has made clear, the tags apply to the original work only, not arrangements or transcriptions (although these will probably become searchable in due course via a different method) — P.davydov 08:28, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
In the forums, we discussed leaving arrangements for now and trying to find an elegant solution to these later. I think most people would know to search for more than just cello/piano if they want Baroque music, but it might be an idea to put together a "search hints" page, because there will always be general public searching who would like to be told that if they want to include Baroque they need to add something else. If that is deemed by everyone to be a good idea, then we can deal later with specifics of whether they should use the word "keyboard", or go for "continuo" or "harpsichord". What is perhaps less clear is what happens if there is very little likelihood that an original will ever be posted, and that people won't know to look under viola da gamba (although that could also be in the hints page). The Bononcini cello sonata may fall into this category although I don't know yet -- need to research it further. (Steltz)
Latest on Handel Cello Sonata --- not only was it not written for cello, it wasn't written by Handel. (Oh, dear . . .) Both Grove and Christopher Hogwood's 1984 book on Handel say it's spurious, probably written by Johann Matthias Leffloth, and in addition, Grove references A.Einstein. This explains the lack of an urtext edition, but since the composer hasn't been proven without a doubt yet, I have listed it as vdg hpd (Grove's specifies harpsichord, not continuo). I have dealt with composer issues in Comments, and if anybody knows to look under Leffloth, they can do it via the Search button on the left. (Steltz)
Curses, my mischief has been detected. :-) It seems I should have thrown quote marks around "Handel" as well. BTW, I fixed Sir Perlnerd DCLXVI’s tag for Grande symphonie funèbre et triomphale, H 80 (Berlioz, Hector), since this is normally performed avec chœur. Feel free to remove my objections to the talk page as archive... Regards, PML @ © talk 8:47, 6 January 2010 (AEDT)
Thanks Philip, duly noted. Now you've mentioned it I've added the "fr" language tag as well. I'm sure no-one will object if you want to tag other works by Berlioz, to be absolutely sure that we don't accidentally tag La damnation de Faust as a motet, etc., etc. :-) — P.davydov 21:55, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
D’oh, I forgot about the language tag! I'd better read the tagging manual then. If there's anything else I need to know please send me a PM on the forums? Philip Legge @ © talk 09:16, 6 January 2010 (AEDT)

Berlioz headscratchers

  • Lélio uses a different configuration in every movement – and the final movement is sung in Italian, rather than French. Are multiple language tags (e.g. fr it) a goer?
It might be helpful to draw a distinction between works in several movements like Lélio on the one hand (which is intended to be performed as a single entity), and collections of songs or instrumental pieces, where each item in the set one can be performed independently of each other. For a standard performance of Lélio" both French and Italian would be required, which justifies the tag of "fr it" (French and Italian languages). This contrasts with, say, a collection of songs with some items in French and some in Italian, where "fr ; it" would indicate the distinction. That would be my approach anyway...
A combined tag for the entire work would be rather amusing: "secular cantatas ; nar ten bar mch ch pf pf2h orch ; fr it" and there’s also a concertante harmonica – which is not a handheld wind instrument! Modern performances tend to substitute glsp or cel, but I’d be tempted to devolve it into the orch tag.
Agreed - no tags needed
  • The Grand Traité is originally in French, but the files uploaded are English translations; I presume there will be special categories for “Books in English”, “Books in French”, etc?
Translations should be treated in the same way as arrangements, so it's the original language (only) that should be tagged. When the "Books" sub-genre comes to be tagged systematically we will probably use new categories for biographies, critiques, primers, etc., but it's fine to leave it as "Books" for now
  • The Requiem has four separate brass orchestras – does tagging allow for pieces for multiple orchestras, such as the Mozart Notturno for 4 orchestras?
Apologies, I thought your "4br" tag was a mistake(!). Yes, in those circumstances the tags should be "4br" and "4orch" respectively
N’importa. The details are too fiddly to have been incorporated in the instrumentation field, but Berlioz’s intention was that the brass groups be distributed to the four compass points away from the main ensemble.
  • Menace des Francs is for male semi-chorus, chorus, and orch (mch ch orch) but the semichoir can also be performed by four solo voices (TTBB) so I tagged the alternate option as "4vv ch orch", which was later altered to "vv ch orch" – is this purely a pragmatic choice, or is it a less accurate description (than "2ten 2bass ch orch")?
As soon as a new tag is registered the system requires that it immediately be assigned to a category, and some of these I've done quickly with the intention of reviewing them later. Certainly the vocal categories will be broken down further, but that's easy to do so long as the tags are accurate. After sleeping on it, I'd say that "2ten 2bass ch orch" is the best tag in the above example
OK, I'll add "pfrh" to the list. After all, we should be even-handed about this... — P.davydov 12:08, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
And lastly, I tagged Faust as both cantata and opera, since Berlioz himself was in two minds over it, even if he later replaced the “opéra de concert” subtitle with “legende dramatique”. (Which reminds me, I should have marked Roméo as both a symphony and cantata; there Berlioz’s subtitle was “symphonie dramatique”.) Philip Legge @ © talk 21:13, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Trio Sonatas

New one, also general, so I won't put a title in. We have lots of trio sonatas that are listed as sonatas (other), but then some as (trio). Do these get 2 tags, i.e. |Tags=sonatas ; 2vn bc and |Tags=trios ; 2vn bc? This seems the most searchable. (I was going to go on to duets and trios after the sonata 1 inst/pno, but this just occurred to me because some trio sonatas got uploaded last night). (Steltz)

The "Trio Sonatas" problem came up in earlier discussions on the forums, and depending on whether or not you count continuo as a single instrument, a "Trio Sonata" can have two, three or four instruments. So we need to avoid the term "trio", and just use "Tags=sonatas ; 2vn bc", etc. — P.davydov 08:28, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
I obviously won't get there for a while, but this means that when I encounter such a piece listed as "trio" in the genre, I will change it to "sonata (other)". (Steltz)

Dance of the Golden Snake (金蛇狂舞) (Nie, Er)

The melody only is shown (instrumentation not unspecified); tagged just as "dances" for now — P.davydov 11:50, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

Baroque sonatas

More baroque sonatas, and changing terminology like "piano". I have decided to check with Grove, and use its terminology, so 6 cello sonatas will change from piano to bc and one will change to hpd. In addition, Roland Marais' sonata has been changed to viola da gamba, since he was a viol player like his more famous father. It's unlikely this was written with a cello in mind. Is this OK? (Steltz)

That's excellent, thanks! Your comment on the so-called "Handel Cello Sonata" is also noted. No doubt there will be similar situations elsewhere... — P.davydov 14:27, 5 January 2010 (UTC)


Iive tagged the two in Symphonic Pieces with soloists as pieces, since the term isnt on grove's list, but i think it might be common enough to warrant an addition?

It isn't on the MLA's list, but the recording databases catalogues confirm that there are a lot of pieces where "Meditation" is used as a work type rather than a descriptive title (e.g. 6 Meditations for piano by Leschetizky), so I think there's a strong case for including it. Would you be OK to go back and tag the two examples you mentioned as "meditations", and I'll add it to the lists. Thanks — P.davydov 20:00, 5 January 2010 (UTC)
Done --Varnis 20:18, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

Schubert, Arpeggione Sonata

  • Schubert, Arpeggione Sonata -- famous piece, not so famous instrument, in fact if we create a category for it, this is likely to (forevermore) be the only piece in that category! On the other hand, the transcriptions are for so many instruments, it's impossible to say which was first. I will check whether any were done by Schubert himself, but it's highly unlikely, since it was only published in 1871 . . . . So now, any suggestions for a tag?
Hmmm...We can either be specific with the arpeggione (and violone example above, for that matter), and create tags specially for the purpose, or we cculd group them with their closest relatives, so to speak. What I think we should do is note these kinds of examples here and leave them untagged until the extent of the issue becomes clear. We're probably going to find a lot more examples when we get to the Baroque chamber pieces, which will give us a broader basis for making the decision. Does that sound reasonable? — P.davydov 00:21, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
Yes, absolutely, but while I'm thinking about it, there are already works at IMSLP that in their original form were for baryton (Haydn, lots of trios), and a lot of the Renaissance works could be done either vocally or by (usually) brass or recorders, the designation was Canto I, Canto II etc. or just SATB, SAAB, etc. "Nearest relative" policy works well for sackbuts, chalumeaux, etc, but maybe not for the arpeggione -- it was a bowed guitar.
I don't see any other way then: "arp" for arpeggione has been added to the list of instrument tags — P.davydov 12:13, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

I have added another piece (well a Method) to learn the arpeggione. But the arp tag somehow does not work right. Anleitung zur Erlernung des von Hrn. Georg Staufer neu erfundenen Guitare-Violoncells (Schuster, Vincenz). All the best. Generoso 09:17, 10 November 2012 (EST)

Works featuring...

  • The pages I did yesterday (Sonatas, piano with 1 instrument) come out saying Works featuring the piano (e.g. the Beethoven sonatas), and the ones I'm doing today, e.g. Mason, Reger, Saint-Saens clarinet sonatas don't. Why? I think I'm doing it exactly the same.
There can be a bit of a delay between categories being created and them showing up at the bottom of a work page. (See the second paragraph from the bottom ofthis page for a technical explanation). As soon as a tag is created then one or more corresponding categories have to be assigned manually right away; as a result some of these are only spur of the moment decisions on my part, that will be subject to improvement :-) — P.davydov 00:21, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Incidental music

Given the fairly large number of works I can think of that fall into the "Incidental music" category, and nothing else, do we think that it ought be added as well as a category (cf. Peer_Gynt,_Op.23_(Grieg,_Edvard))--Varnis 00:54, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Actually I thought I'd added it when I worked on the Beethoven examples, where it became clear that it was necessary. But it's on the list now as "incidental music" — P.davydov 12:16, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Changing soloists

In addition, what did we decide for pieces where a soloist changes instrument during the piece cf. Twee_Walsen,_Op.2_(Veldhuizen,_Rick_van) did we decide on "picc fl orch" or "picc orch ; fl orch"?

Just listing the two instruments will make it look like 2 players. The standard to denote "played by 1 person" is to use brackets for the doubled instrument -- in orchestral notation it denotes something played in addition. So flute doubling piccolo is fl (picc), but the brackets probably will cause a syntax problem in the tagging system? All other suggestions I can think of probably also will, e.g. concertos ; fl +picc. But I really think we need to find a way of indicating 2 instruments, 1 player. (Steltz)
Steltz's approach is the right one to take in the "Instrumentation" field, but for the tag we should use "picc fl orch" because all three of those components are essential in order to perform the whole piece (whereas "picc orch ; fl orch" would indicate that the solo part could be played entirely on the flute if a piccolo isn't to hand) — P.davydov 12:23, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
Isn't that going to make it look like 2 soloists? Not in the "Works for . . ." part, but in the "Piccolo flute and orchestra" part.
It's difficult to come up with any way of describing this piece that isn't potentially misleading. What was the composer thinking? :-) — P.davydov 21:52, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Sonata for 2 pianos

A sonata for 2 pianos, if its only tag is sonatas ; 2pf, will it come up under duets? Or do I need to put a second tag on it? (Steltz)

No, "2pf" is all that's needed — P.davydov 12:17, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Zintl, Frank, violin sonata

He states this is the violin version of his clarinet sonata, but he's loaded it on to a separate page. Should it be on the same page as an arrangement? (Steltz)

Well, yes, really it should. Similarly, all the Liszt piano arrangements of his orchestral symphonic poems similarly have their own pages, but I decided to leave well alone :-) — P.davydov 12:21, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

LeClair Sonatas

LeClair Sonatas, but it will apply to a few others as well. According to Grove, of the 12 sonatas, some are for violin, some are for flute. In these cases, flute is not a secondary option, it is the intended instrument. I will download it and double check, but I know this often happens with Baroque sonata sets. Two tags? i.e. sonatas ; vn bc, and sonatas ; fl bc? (If someone ever uploads the full op.1 of Handel, it will be the same problem.) (Steltz) [Edit] Just found another - Hummel, op.5 has 2 sonatas for violin, 1 for viola.

As touched on in one the Berlioz examples above, because these are collections of works not intended to be performed all at once or in a particular order, we should use multiple tags like this: "sonatas ; vn bc ; fl bc" — P.davydov 12:26, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Breval, cello sonata

According to Grove, the original designation for this wasn't "continuo" or "piano", it was "basso", which can mean lots of things, and in some cases, the keyboard can be dispensed with altogether. This sonata is, as far as I know, usually done with keyboard, so sonatas ; vc bc seems the best? (Steltz)

There's also the option of "vc kbd" for unspecified keyboard instruments, if that helps? — P.davydov 12:27, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Bottesini, Reverie

No type called "Reverie", this will also affect Glazunov's Reverie. Both were in the sonatas genre, so I've moved it to single instrument w/piano for now, but eventually it will have to be tagged. Suggestions? (Steltz)

Let's stick with "piece" for now, as it's difficult to argue a case for "Reverie" as being a work type, rather than a descriptive title — P.davydov 15:25, 6 January 2010 (UTC)
You might have to go digging secondary literature. Berlioz’s Rêverie et Caprice caused similar headscratching (there is a type for Caprices, but it wouldn’t cover the whole work) until I found a letter where Berlioz explicitly calls it a romance, matching the subtitle (which wasn’t on the score; the edition uploaded to IMSLP had eradicated the work’s original subtitle). Consulting worklists for Bottesini and Glazounov might help squeeze the reveries into a type occupied by another similar work. Regards, PML @ © talk 8:44, 8 January 2010 (AEDT)

Cellitti, Venanzio, Sigla no.2

The translation of "Sigla" is "signature tune". The piece is only 33 bars long. This seems the most likely candidate for the catch-all "piece" unless someone has a good idea. (Steltz)

Again, I'd suggest "Piece" for the time being — P.davydov 15:26, 6 January 2010 (UTC)


This has come up as a solo instrument, in which case "harm" should be the tag — P.davydov 15:36, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for re-tagging the Pratella for me -- I looked for harmonium under the keyboard category but couldn't find it. (Steltz)

Schobart, op.2 and 5 sonatas and Kozeluch, sonatas

If a piece has a violin part "ad lib" and it could theoretically be left out, then these should also get a tag for solo, i.e. 'sonatas ; pf ; vn pf'? Grove states that the Kozeluch are anyway arrangements of solo sonatas. I need to download them again from work tomorrow, but I seem to remember one of them needed the violinist to read the top of the piano line (but I could be confusing that with something else).

Yes, if the work is a sonata for piano with an ad lib. violin part, then 'sonatas ; pf ; vn pf' would be correct. For orchestral works it's not so important if particular instruments are optional. Thanks for your remarkable progress, BTW! — P.davydov 16:28, 6 January 2010 (UTC)


This work has been labelled as symphonic with soloists, but I cannot find information on the internet easily, and I cannot view the score since it is TB, does nayone have any further information as to its instrumentation, for the field simply says orchestra?--Varnis 17:18, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Under "other dramatic" Grove says: La tempête (W. Shakespeare, trans. G. de Pourtalès), 1923, 1929, some movts lost, unpubd apart from Prelude, orch, and 2 chants d'Ariel, 1v, pf. I'm afraid this doesn't help much, and unfortunately, my university library doesn't own a copy. (Steltz)
I was just about to quote Grove as well :-) The uploader must have had the vocal soloists in mind when they chose the genre. The two songs of Ariel are all that's there at present, but we should still be ready for the prelude if and when it comes, so I'd suggest "incidental music ; orch ; v pf" — P.davydov 17:50, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Cellitti, Sigla part 2

There isn't really a category for a percussionist playing different instruments within one small piece either. In this piece, the percussionist plays guira (a type of ratchet), campanaccio (cowbell), and piatto (drum). "Drums" isn't appropriate because only 1 of them is a drum. "Perc" looks like the most appropriate, but it's not supposed to be used in chamber music. Suggestions? (Steltz)

"perc" should actually be fine here. I'll amend the note in the table, which isn't quite as appropriate for percussion as it is for other instrument families. Thanks for pointing that out — P.davydov 20:41, 6 January 2010 (UTC)