Simandl Editions: Sankey vs. Peters

Discussion in 'Jazz Technique [DB]' started by Chris Fitzgerald, Oct 5, 2001.

  1. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I started with a new teacher last week, and we started with Simandl. When he saw that I had the Sankey edition, he got a kind of pained look on his face and asked if it would be too much trouble for me to get the Peters edition instead. I said, "of course not", but it left me wondering - just how many of the fingerings did Sankey change, and in what ways are the approaches fundamentally different?

    My first teacher had me studying out of Rabbath, and I liked that approach a lot - it just kind of made sense to my hand most of the time. I've been practicing out of the Sankey Simandl lately (while waiting for the Peters edition to arrive), and I notice that a lot of the fingerings are contrary to what my hand wants to do. Granted, I have very little experience with traditional technique...can anybody shed any light on this subject?

    I'll be interested in replies to this, too.

    When I started "self-teaching" I picked up the Lucas Drew ed. of Simandl. When I began lessons my teacher told me that since he had studied with Sankey, that Sankey's was the edition he preferred. However, he told me not to purchase another book, we would just work out the differences in fingerings as we went. So far, in half position, we've pretty much followed the Drew edition.
    Is the Peters a newer one yet?
  3. My "first" Simandl was the Old Fischer Edition, Edited by Fred Zimmerman. BTW, did you know that the original German Editions also included a piano part to many of the exercises? At least that's what my teacher told me. Anyway,When that one fell apart, I got the Lucas Drew Edition, and I know what you mean Chris, sometimes my hand just didn't want to go with the written fingerings, which was the cause of much angst between my teacher and myself. Then I got the Peters Edition. Some of the most obvious differences are that the print is Clearer, and for many of the exercises, there are two sets of fingerings, one above and one below.
    there are also some slight modifications in the bowing exercises. Also some position differences.
    I don't know how important this is to anyone, but the paper seems to be a better quality as well, able to stand up to many erasures ;).
  4. Don Higdon

    Don Higdon In Memoriam

    Dec 11, 1999
    Princeton Junction, NJ
    I've had 2 teachers express dissatisfaction with the Sankey edition that I had bought on my own. My current arco teacher refuses to use it, sent me out to get the Drew. I don't know the difference between Drew and Peters, but I get the impression it's more important that it not be Sankey, however well he played. By the way, my teacher was the last protege of Fred Zimmerman. And, for what it's worth, she makes her own changes to the Drew fingerings.
  5. I also use the Drew, and my teacher changes the fingerings. We really use a Billie' book more.
  6. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    Good to know my teacher has company in not caring for the Sankey Edition. Can anybody sum up in a nutshell of any size what Sankey's fingering concept was supposed to be all about? One would assume that there's not much point in redoing most of the original fingerings unless you have some sort of concept of fingering which is supposed to be better. What was Sankey's idea? Or is it more complicated than that?

    Also, if anybody has a clear idea of what forum this thread should be in besides this one, let me know and I'll move it there. Not that it matters, but.....
  7. Chris: Re: Sankey--Unless someone else answers first, I'll ask my teacher and get back to you on this one.
    It may be a few weeks; one family crisis after another has prevented me from getting a lesson since late July
  8. I've never seen the Peters. However I've seen the edition by Fischer and used the Sankey. Sankey did not change anything, he added a bunch of stuff at the end and offered fingerings in addition to the original. I studied both sets of fingerings wherever they were offered. He also renamed the positions. This may actually be the problem some teachers have with it (why would anyone have a problem with his including optional fingerings and extra exercises?). His renaming of the positions is a little odd. The first semi-tone position is still called half position, but thereafter each semi-tone receives a whole number.

    So I'll recap. Sankey renamed the positions, offered optional fingerings in places where he thought there are two equally valid fingerings, and added a boat-load of his own exercises in addition to all of the original stuff. IMO, anyone using other editions is getting short changed. And if people are uncomfortable with the renaming of positions, I ask, does anyone remember the names of the friggin' positions anyway?
  9. Monte


    Jan 9, 2001
    DFW Area, Tejas
    I'm glad to know I'm not the only one. Whenever someone starts describing things by positions I get a severe headache.....:confused:

  10. bass4art


    Oct 2, 2010
    what about showing links to these diferent version so we can see what the hype should be about. I use the Drew myself.
  11. Wow, I've seen some threads resurrected before, but this one is 9 years old.

    My .02- I was born and raised on Sankey, the one with the Blue cover. My teacher gave me a 3 year beatdown in that fingering system.

    I play almost exclusively jazz and the system has rarely failed me. The failures are most usually of my own doing, anyways... It is a very solid and reliable way to finger just about any passage.

    If you look at Zimmerman's fingerings (for example, his fingerings for the Beethoven symphonies) it is clear to see that while there may be subtle differences, the system is largely the same.

    Furthermore, when it comes to 'making music', who cares what we call the position?
  12. right on. i wonder what Chris F would say now, 9 years after starting this thread. i've been working out of the Drew edition of Simandl, but am drawn to the Rabbath approach and would like to try that. it seems more "ergonomic" or intuitive than Simandl.
  13. lecoreis


    Jan 12, 2009
    I like the Drew edition never seen the Peters tryed to get online but cant find to compare
  14. Les Fret

    Les Fret

    Sep 9, 2009
    I just name the positions to the where my first finger is. Easy as that and no headaches. There are too many methods with all different position names. Why make it so confusing when it is really very simple? When communicating with most teachers it is a problem though. Because most people still use the Simandl position names.
  15. So, like do you know Carlos Merriweather?