"Recording the Soul of Music" --
The Authenticity of Welte's roll-recorded performances
Dear Editor of the MMD, I hereby extend to you a hearty invitation
to the international Symposium to be held on March 10th and 11th, 2013.
This event will present the latest scientific and musicological
research into early 20th century Welte roll-recording systems and
examine the validity of these musical documents as guides to historical
The Research Department of the Bern (Switzerland) University of the
Arts is mounting this Symposium at the invitation of Dr. Christoph
Hänggi, Director of the Museum für Musikautomaten Seewen (Solothurn,
Switzerland). For the most recent details on this see the Symposium
Primarily, the latest technical information about Welte's recording
systems will be presented. This is now possible thanks to the recent
investigations into the only preserved Welte music roll recorder and
the discovery of more than 1300 master rolls, many of which still have
ink traces from this apparatus and other annotations by Welte.
New investigative methodologies now increase the credibility of these
documents as sources of historic information for both piano and organ
playing, with roots that can be traced far back into the 19th century.
The result is that the rolls, acting as new source material, allow
extended revelations about the musical paradigms of this era.
The results of the Swiss research will be supplemented by specialist
contributions from England, Germany and the USA, including two
round-table discussions. In a special Symposium Concert, entitled
"Music minus one around 1900," modern musicians will adjust to the
interpretation styles of the era through playing to the Welte-Mignon
and Welte Philharmonie "accompaniment rolls". In this manner the wider
perspectives of vocal and instrumental music will be included.
We would appreciate it if you could kindly inform your members about
With best wishes,
Kai Köpp - Swiss National Science Foundation Professorship
in Applied Interpretation Research
Bern University of the Arts, Bern, Switzerland
email@example.com [delete ".geentroep" to reply]
[ Among the presenters and panelists will be several player piano
[ and Welte experts, including Hans-W. Schmitz, Gerhard Dangel,
[ David Rumsey, Rex Lawson, Mervin E. Fulton and Nelson Barden.
[ See also http://www.davidrumsey.ch/
[ Dr. Köpp earned graduate degrees from Harvard University and
[ University of Freiburg. His article, "Historical Performance
[ Practice - Interpretation Research on Welte Artist Rolls [recorded]
[ for Piano and Organ," was published by the Seewen museum in 2011
[ as part of the commemoration, "100 Years of the Welte Philharmonie
[ Organ." -- Robbie