Any idea what Wagner intends with these dynamic marking?

• Nov 29, 2020 - 22:05

These two screen captures are from the same spot in different editions of the same score, Die Walkure Act III Scene I.
I'm a bit perplexed by the hairpin diminuendo combined with the "cresc." text. Which is it, > or <? What's supposed to happen with the dynamics?
I can't get the intent in recordings either.
Wagner Q1.PNG Wagner Q2.PNG

It's on IMSLP45497 page 123 of 137 in the pdf and IMSLP341993 page 182 of 459 in the pdf.


In reply to by marty strasinger

I suggest that you drink lots of beer and then do what comes naturally.🤣

I do honestly believe the intention is that the orchestra get louder while still doing the decrescendo on the tied notes as in the previous two measures you show. It seems this will have to be driven by the strings and possibly Brunhilda. If I were trying to make it playback correctly I think I would put an invisible mp on the notes with the hairpin (velocity change set to about 15) and let the others (including the VC with missing dynamics) do the normal cresc. I'm not real familiar with Wagner so listening to this part of the opera might give a better answer.

In reply to by bobjp

I’m kind of thinking that mike320’s first suggestion is the way to go. The score has a lot of cases that are either poor engraving practice or else very unconventional/not clear direction in the use of hairpins and cresc/dim text. Sometimes it’s obvious which is which, often not. Like when the text “cresc” is inserted between the arms of a < hairpin, or one instrument uses a hairpin while another uses text in the same measure. I am especially fond of “<<<<“ which sometimes means one long crescendo but sometimes is meant as “p

I seem to recall having seen this exact question before (perhaps even by yourself?)

If memory serves me right, the "cresc" indication runs from the previous system and started from piano up till here (where it is a reminder repeat text); while each step within it has the diminuendo hairpin indication for local fadeout.
So the desired playback is a bit like an increasingly loud "sigh" on each note.
p>pp mp>p mf>mp f>mf f<

In reply to by jeetee

If I remember, his previous question had a long cres. that started before all of the hairpins that were the opposite direction so what you said was clear to me. In this case there is simply a cresc. and dim. hairpin on the same note followed on the next beat by a louder dynamic (f).

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