Petrucci Library Press

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Petrucci Library Press

Postby perlnerd666 » Thu Jul 23, 2009 11:08 pm

The IMSLP has a new and exciting venture: publishing works in hard copies, for distribution on Amazon.com. Here's how it works: IMSLP gets to suggest titles to the publisher Serenissima, who publishes them (IMSLP Scans) under the imprint PLP (Petrucci Library Press). IMSLP gets royalties form each copy sold, which goes towards site maintenance.

Since the titles are selected by IMSLP, any suggestions are very welcome!
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby horndude77 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 12:39 am

That's way neat. Do we have data on the most popular downloads? That might be a good place to start looking for candidates. How many are we looking for to start out with? Would any work be needed to prepare the chosen works for binding?
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby perlnerd666 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:44 am

I don't know about preparation. So far, there are eight titles:
Arensky Violin Concerto
Debussy Pelleas, Marche Ecossaise, La Damoiselle Elue, La Boite a joujoux
Foote Serenade for Strings
Elgar Cockaigne
Berlioz Damnation of Faust

I think that these lesser-known titles are a good idea - they are rather hard to find elsewise. The pricing is competitive - my only complaint is that they aren't available on kindle. :wink:
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Carolus » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:37 am

Do you really think they'd be useful on Kindle? They were asking me about that and the option is open - or at least not ruled out altogether. Is it not possible to load the PDFs on IMSLP into Kindle? I don't know that much about it except that it's a portable reader that takes books in the form of electronic file (presumably including PDF). Also, what do you think would be a competitive price to charge if it were possible to make them available on Kindle?
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby dwil9798 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:45 am

I think Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty would be a great choice.
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Yagan Kiely » Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:10 am

That's way neat. Do we have data on the most popular downloads? That might be a good place to start looking for candidates. How many are we looking for to start out with? Would any work be needed to prepare the chosen works for binding?
Wouldn't it be better to look towards the featured scores?


Would this effect how people upload their own compositions to IMSLP? In the past and present, when filling in the submit form you name yourself as publisher… would this change?


That said, this is brilliant!
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Carolus » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:30 am

Would this effect how people upload their own compositions to IMSLP?

Not in any way. Composers should continue to list themselves as publisher. Should this series grow to the point where libraries and others are wanting printed scores of new works to be made available, Serenissima (the owner of the imprint, PLP) would have to negotiate a license to print with each composer, who would retain the copyrights to their own works. The same applies to new editions, arrangements, typesets, etc. Right now, the series is limited strictly to items that are public domain in at least the USA and Canada.
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Yagan Kiely » Fri Jul 24, 2009 9:39 am

Yep yep, fair enough.

Does Serenissima have a website, google seemed find nothing?
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby perlnerd666 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:29 pm

Yagan Kiely wrote:Wouldn't it be better to look towards the featured scores?

Well, as the person who does the featured scores - not all of them are perfect choices (Ariane et Barbe-Bleu, anyone?)
Carolus wrote:Do you really think they'd be useful on Kindle? They were asking me about that and the option is open - or at least not ruled out altogether. Is it not possible to load the PDFs on IMSLP into Kindle? I don't know that much about it except that it's a portable reader that takes books in the form of electronic file (presumably including PDF). Also, what do you think would be a competitive price to charge if it were possible to make them available on Kindle?

Definitely useful - think about parts, etc. $9.99 is definitely the average for a book. So to make it competitive - $4.99 for smaller items, and $9.99 for others/rare?
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby gibarian » Fri Jul 24, 2009 7:30 pm

This seems to me to be very dangerous territory. The whole point of a library is to check out (and turn in, presumably) books - not charge for them. What is to prevent this from becoming a subscription service? Is there a mission statement, and, if so, does this venture actually fit into it? Why was this press chosen? Why Amazon? Why talk about Kindle instead of Sony Reader? Who had his/her foot in the door?

There are, of course, advantages to third party printing - Much music is prepared for non-standard paper sizes. Will print-on-demand address this, or will everything just be shrunk (Dover-Style) to a standard size paper?

This may be a good way to create a true print-on-demand service for low-demand scores still in copyright (a way to further ISMLP's goals). Such a service does not exist because it's not profitable for publishers, who make their money from institutional sales.

From an environmental perspective, digital distribution ensures individuals who only need to reference part of a score will only print that part out; in addition, there is additional damage in the form of transport pollution and packaging.

In addition, has anyone spoken with some of the research libraries who have so generously contributed to this site? Their universities may have policies against contributing their resources to other companies for profit.
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby perlnerd666 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 9:47 pm

gibarian wrote:This seems to me to be very dangerous territory. The whole point of a library is to check out (and turn in, presumably) books - not charge for them. What is to prevent this from becoming a subscription service? Is there a mission statement, and, if so, does this venture actually fit into it? Why was this press chosen? Why Amazon? Why talk about Kindle instead of Sony Reader? Who had his/her foot in the door?

Suspicious, you are.
1. IMSLP will always be available for free, and this is to help that happen. Some people prefer scores in hard copies, and some can only be used as such (ever tried playing off a laptop on a piano?). It does cost feldmahler money to keep the site running, so this is a good measure to make sure that it will stay going.
2. Mission statement? Read IMSLP:Goals.
3. Ask Carolus. I suspect that they were the only one who agreed. :wink:
4. IMSLP already has a partnership with Amazon (see the "new advertising" forum). Thus it becomes clear why the kindle.
5. Thanks for your concern, but we really don't need people attacking us right now (no offence (seriously, no offence)).
gibarian wrote:There are, of course, advantages to third party printing - Much music is prepared for non-standard paper sizes. Will print-on-demand address this, or will everything just be shrunk (Dover-Style) to a standard size paper?

As far as I know, no.
gibarian wrote:This may be a good way to create a true print-on-demand service for low-demand scores still in copyright (a way to further ISMLP's goals). Such a service does not exist because it's not profitable for publishers, who make their money from institutional sales.

Indeed. The problem si trying to convince said publishers.
gibarian wrote:From an environmental perspective, digital distribution ensures individuals who only need to reference part of a score will only print that part out; in addition, there is additional damage in the form of transport pollution and packaging.

Yes, but this is really only for the people who want a hard copy.
gibarian wrote:In addition, has anyone spoken with some of the research libraries who have so generously contributed to this site? Their universities may have policies against contributing their resources to other companies for profit.

It is not for profit! That is the whole point of this website! And we have already been specifically asked by certain libraries (i.e. Sibley) to mirror their content. Before you go around accusing us, please read the "mission statement." IMSLP will always be available for free, and therefore it should be clear that we are not a for-profit business model (that would be a pretty aweful one).
Also, if you saw users' reaction when a certain website did, indeed use IMSLP's content for profit, then it should be clear to you why we wouldn't try that.
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby casey326 » Fri Jul 24, 2009 9:55 pm

I think this is a very good idea. Reprint editions fill a very important gap in the print music marketplace, as evidenced by the mushrooming catalogs of outfits like Dover, Masters, Kalmus and others. I don't think starting up a publishing venture is necessarily in conflict with IMSLP's mission, provided it is handled well. To me, the idea of IMSLP is free *access* to scores and parts. Purchasing a printed edition gains you access as well as a tangible copy to own. The availability of a hard copy of a public domain score is not in conflict with continued free availability of a digitized version. As long as this distinction is understood and maintained, I don't think our community has anything to worry about on that front.

As for the legal issues of making derivatives of derivatives of copies owned by libraries, I'm not sure the Publisher would go that route anyway. Other reprint houses, to my knowledge, base their editions on "clean" hard copies of the original edition. This would be the best way to ensure high quality, and this point must be stressed. In order for reprints to be marketable in the digital age, they must exhibit superiority over digital versions, IMO. In other words, if I'm going to pay for a printed score, it had better be of better quality than if I had just printed it off myself. This is an area where many publishers are beginning to fail: shiny, glare-y ink, blotches, faintness, etc.

Thirdly, regarding suggestions for titles, I think it would be prudent to avoid duplication of effort with other reprint houses, such as:
1) Dover
2) Masters Music
3) Edition Silvertrust
4) Recital publications
5) Kalmus
Checking against these catalogs would be a good idea. Rest assured, there is enough out-of-print music out there to go around!
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Melodia » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:42 am

gibarian wrote:In addition, has anyone spoken with some of the research libraries who have so generously contributed to this site? Their universities may have policies against contributing their resources to other companies for profit.


If it's PD, that doesn't matter. PD means you can use it FOR ANY USE.
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Carolus » Sat Jul 25, 2009 5:55 am

Casey326 is correct about the necessity of having a high quality image to work from. The scans of the Berlioz Damnation de Faust were actually a gift from Serenissima, BTW. They are not as clean as the printed score itself, but very decent nonetheless. Just to clarify, Serenissima is the sole owner of the imprint "Pretrucci Library Press". In return for being able to use such a similar (though not identical) name to our own Petrucci Music Library, they are to pay IMSLP a royalty on each copy sold under the imprint, consider our suggestions for titles to include in the series, and (most importantly) keep prices reasonable.

Obviously, it makes little sense to reprint the Litolff edition of the Beethoven symphonies when they are already available for a very reasonable price from Dover. That said, Kalmus (the real Kalmus, not Alfred) is geared to a very different market (orchestras) than Dover, so it might be perfectly logical to make a study-sized score (7.44 x 9.69) of the Berlioz Damnation de Faust available even though Kalmus offers the same score - in large (10 x 13 inches) format - for USD 225. (Dover offers the same score in 9 x 12 size as part of their "Phoenix" series for USD 100.)
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Re: Petrucci Library Press

Postby Leea25 » Sat Jul 25, 2009 9:51 am

What an excellent idea this is. Anything which supports this extraordinary site is well worth it!

A couple of comments... No one has yet mentioned Elibron.com. It might be worth checking their catalogue as they already provide reprints of a lot of PD scores quite cheaply. Maybe it is worth competing with them I don't know. I do know that they have had some sort of shakeup recently and are actually rather efficient now - previously they had a very bad reputation. They also publish some scores not available on IMSLP, so perhaps some sort of agreement could be made with them?

This could be a wonderful resource for orchestras too. There's nothing worse if, for example, your library's orchestral set of X piece is out, than having to download, print and bind 30 parts and a score from IMSLP. It's fantastic that the opportunity is there at all of course, but I for one would much rather simply order a cheap printed set. Goodman Music (I think that's the name) do this - I bought a complete set of parts and a score from them through Sheetmusic Plus for the Elgar Serenade for £20.

If Kindle really requires no effort, go for it, but to my mind it is a bit of a waste of time. it's only available in the US, severly limiting those who can use it and it also doesn't seem to be a very useful platform from which to view music (in my opinion). Reading whole pages of orchestral scores on my monitor makes them quite small enough! For me there's nothing like having the actual score in your hands.

Over all, a wonderful idea, and one which, as a collector of unusual scores, I would certainly support. After all, everything will still be here for free if one doesn't want to buy a copy from Amazon.

Good luck with the venture,
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