New Bach Edition

Foto: Paavo Blafield, 2009

The “New Bach Edition” (Johann Sebastian Bach: New Edition of the Complete Works; NBA) is the historical-critical complete edition of all works by the composer Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750). It was edited by the Bach-Institut Göttingen and the Bach-Archiv Leipzig and published by Bärenreiter-Verlag, until the end of the division of Germany in collaboration with the Deutscher Verlag für Musik, Leipzig. The first volume was published in 1954, and it was completed in 2007. The edition encompasses over 100 volumes of music with corresponding critical commentaries. The NBA is divided into eight series and a further series with supplements.

As an Urtext edition, the New Bach Edition offers the world of scholarship a reliable musical text which is equally useful to performers for practical use. With its editions prepared according to the most exacting methods of source criticism, the edition has set new standards for modern critical-scholarly editions in the second half of the twentieth century.

2010 saw the publication of the first volume in the series “Johann Sebastian Bach: New Bach Edition – Revised” (NBArev), containing the „Mass in B minor”. The NBArev is edited by the Bach Archive Leipzig, under its Editorial Board of Christoph Wolff, Uwe Wolf and Peter Wollny. The aim of the edition is to evaluate the latest musicological research by drawing on scientific methods of analysis (x-ray spectography). Approximately 15 volumes are planned.