All About Counterpoints Publishing

By  | November 22, 2010 | 0 Comments | Filed under: The Editor's Desk

We Saw a Need

Counterpoints Publishing LLC was formed to answer the question, “who does a countertenor have to know to get his hands on some repertoire?” While the countertenor voice has experienced a well-deserved renaissance since Alfred Deller stepped out of the choir stalls at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, much of the music from the countertenor’s Baroque heyday remains either bound up in libraries, or in illegible or prohibitively expensive scores.

We at Counterpoints Publishing say, “we are well into the information age, yet we are still combing for music like its 1899. THIS IS NOT ACCEPTABLE!” Counterpoints Publishing is not your typical publisher. We publish freshly revised and historically informed piano/vocal editions of the core countertenor repertoire  (beginning with Handel’s operatic arias) at low cost. These affordable editions will be available as downloads from Counterpoints Online Shoppe. No more waiting around for a shipment from the ONLY music store in town, no need to buy the entire expensive score from a traditional publisher when you only need your arias, and no giving up on singing hard-to-find music.

The Value We Add

Each aria will contain a comprehensive benefits package: a phonetic transcription (even of English!), a literal English translation, ossia ornamentation suggestions, and other general information about the opera or work to provide context.  However, our most ingenious detail may be this:  Inspired by Beverly Sills’ surviving copy of Giulio Cesare in Egitto, we insert blank ossia staves above the vocal line for you to work out your own ornaments. (Sills used music stave stickers on her score.)

The Kind of Business We Want To Be

We hope to foster a constant dialogue with our customers and maintain a relationship much like a mom and pop shop.  We want to be able to provide you with the music and information you are looking for. Please send us a note on our “Say Hello” page, and give us suggestions for services and scores you would like to see.

We hope to do our part to protect the environment; we are currently looking for ways to provide our scores on electronic readers, and we encourage you to print wisely!

Our monthly online journal, The Countertenor Voice, will feature informative articles from eminent experts in the countertenor voice and early music, reviews and previews of recordings and performances, and general banter about how it is countertenors do what they do.  Check back regularly for these interesting posts or subscribe via our RSS feed. You will be able to purchase the recordings and books we mention through our online affiliate aStore (@

We hope that you will share our site with other countertenors and fans of the voice.  Counterpoints Publishing is first and foremost a company created for countertenors by countertenors and hopes to further their place in the world.

So who do you need to know to get your hands on some repertoire?  Us :-) .

-The Staff of Counterpoints Publishing LLC

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Ian Howell is a countertenor based in Boston, Massachusetts. He regularly performs as a concert and operatic soloist all across North America and writes from time to time. He was educated at Yale and Capital Universities, sang with Chanticleer from 2000-04, and is currently a Doctor of Musical Arts student at the New England Conservatory of Music. Follow him on Twitter or Facebook.