It started with a hand-me-down piano-vocal score of Handel’s masterwork oratorio Messiah
. It was heavily marked in pen and, more to the point, it was an edition that shall not be named. Not all editions are created equal. Some are for reading from, while others are for cutting into little circles.
Then a Bach Mass in B-minor piano-vocal score handed down from a friend and mentor, also a pretty crummy edition. Worse, it was crumbling away on yellowing, acidic paper. Another hand-me-down score, another staggering work of artistic genius by a German in a wig.