There are four primary sources for the Inventions and Sinfonias.
- The Little Klavier Book for Wilhelm Friedemann (1722)
- An autograph fair copy by Bach (1723)
- Ornamented versions in a manuscript belonging to Bach's student Heinrich Nikolaus Gerber (1725)
- Ornamented versions from an unknown student (ca. 1723)
Invention #1 is taken from the 1723 autograph, which was originally written in the "standard" form typically seen, with the triplets "filled in" at a later date (Bärenreiter XII; ABRSM 5; Alfred 20; Henle 65).
Of the editions consulted, all but Henle include both the "standard" and "triplet" versions. Henle omits it: "Bach obviously wanted to exemplify to a pupil how it was possible to vary [the main motif]" (65).
The ABRSM (5) and Alfred (20) editions both indicate that it was and is acceptable performance practice, in the triplet version, to modify the sixteenth notes throughout to make the rhythm consistent. So, for example, the first measure would be played:
T:Bach Invention No. 1 in C Major, BWV 772a
T:Triplet version, m. 1, right hand
(3:2:2 z2C (3:2:2 D2E (3:2:3 GFE (3:2:3 FED G2c2 B2c2 |
This YouTube video includes five separate recordings of the Invention by great pianists. Glenn Gould is the only performer to include "extra notes", though not at the beginning. He inserts them as decorations, especially beginning in m. 16, and in two-sixteenth/eighth rhythm rather than triplets. (Regarding the linked question, notice Gieseking plays mordents rather than trills.)
Wanda Landowska does not play triplets.
Andras Schiff plays the triplets!
- J.S. Bach, Inventions and Sinfonias (BWV 772-801), Urtext of the New Bach Edition, ed. Georg von Dadelsen (1970, Bärenreiter).
- J.S. Bach, Inventions and Sinfonias (BWV 772-801), ed. Richard Jones (1984, ABRSM).
- J.S. Bach, Two-Part Inventions for the Keyboard, ed. Willard A. Palmer (1968, Alfred).
- J.S. Bach, Inventionen, Sinfonien, Urtext, ed. Rudolf Steglich (1979, G. Henle).