The Pottag Preparatory Melodies

The Pottag Preparatory Melodies

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One classic publication I have come back to recently is Preparatory Melodies to Solo Work for French Horn edited by Max P. Pottag. This is a great publication for the moderately advanced student–melodic, short, with some challenges–and I have recently come back to it in my personal practice. It was a book my first major teacher used, Melbern Nixon. Copyrighted in 1941, it is widely available today and inexpensive, Amazon has it here for example.

I remember being puzzled by the line on the cover where it states they are “Selected from the Famous SCHANTL Collection.” Famous Schatl collection?

schantl 120 The Pottag Preparatory MelodiesIn my Doctoral research I did actually sort out the source. The etudes are by the Viennese hornist Josef Schantl (1842-1902) and were published in volume III of his four volume Grosse theoritisch-praktisch Horn-Schule (Heilbronn: C. F. Schmidt, 1903). Milan Yancich reprinted volume III as 120 Melodic Pieces Without Accompaniment. He also reprinted volume I as Etudes for the Natural Horn,  volume II as Grand Theoretical and Practical Method for the Valve Horn, and vol. IV as Kopprasch, 90 Etudes (this is actually a mixture of Kopprasch and others, as described in this article).

The 98 etudes selected (out of 120) by Pottag from Schantl volume III remain a great, practical collection. For those interested in seeing the original publication I do recommend the Yancich version, but for modern teaching purposes I would recommend the Pottag version as a great, practical publication.