Types of scores and how to find them

Why should you use (and cite!) different types of scores in your research?

There are a number of different options when it comes to scores you can use for research and performance:

  • Manuscripts
  • Facsimiles
  • Scholarly editions, including collected/historical sets (M2s), collected/complete works editions (M3s), and Urtext editions
  • Performing editions

When conducting music research, you should choose your edition carefully based on your personal research needs:

  • Do you need a scholarly edition that captures the composer’s final intention for the piece?
  • Are you looking for a score to use in performance that includes suggestions from an expert interpreter of that style or genre?
  • Have you identified what you think is a wrong note or inaccurate text in a specific edition and need to compare it to others to find out if that’s really what you’ve found?
  • Etc., etc., etc.

For more information on the different types of scores, visit the tabs on this guide.

Questions? Need help?

Anyone can access scores through the University Libraries - you don't need to be a music major! All members of the campus community can borrow the Music Library's print scores, and digital scores are available to campus affiliates on- and off-campus with a UMN Internet ID and password. Our materials are also available to our wider community of the general public for in-library use when you visit the Music Library in person, and non-UMN users can borrow many of our scores via Interlibrary Loan through a local public library branch. The tabs on the right side of this guide feature information and links to a number of resources, and instructions on how you can get started with using them.

If you need help, please contact Music Librarian Jessica Abbazio (jabbazio@umn.edu) or the Music Library staff (musiclib@umn.edu).

Last Updated: Nov 22, 2021 2:06 PM