My first conscious experience with Bärenreiter was while I was studying singing, with Gluck’s most well-known opera “Orfeo ed Euridice”. Unfortunately, the original Viennese version was too low for my voice. But I was fortunate as during my research on his reform operas, I discovered that there was another version of it – namely the later Parma version, which was written for a different singer (castrato) and ultimately suited my voice much better. As luck would have it, Bärenreiter was busy editing a preliminary score of precisely this version at that time and was kind enough to hand this over to me. Et voilà: the “Orfeo” from Parma was now transposed up a fourth and suited my voice wonderfully 😊.
As a countertenor, I am particularly interested in historical performance practice, so the Bärenreiter Urtext editions are of unimaginable value to me, because they help me to retrace the genesis of the works, thus reviving the piece and making it resound.
For me as a performer, this creates a special closeness to the composer, as if Gluck had composed the Parma version especially for me.