Photographs/2016 2016.02.26 10:00
In two letters to Nikisch, Bruckner mentions that 'many important things are not marked in the score, including frequent changes of tempo' (letters of 17 July and 5 November 1884, i.e., before the first performance). Evidently, the solution to the mystery of these entries is that they were the result of instructions which Bruckner gave by word of mouth, most probably after the performances of the symphony on two pianos by Josef Schalk, Löwe and Zottmann, and must have been entered into the score on his authority. Since they are not in the composer's hand, they have been placed within square brackets in the present edition. This is one of the very rare instances when verbal instructions of Bruckner's, backed up by passages from letters, can and must be taken into account in addition to the autograph itself.
The same applies to the controversial cymbal clash at rehearsal letter W in the Adagio, which was later inserted by Bruckner on a separate piece of paper. It stemmed from a suggestion by Nikisch, as the previously cited letter by Josef Schalk of 10 January 1885 shows: 'You may not know', Schalk wrote, 'that Nikisch has managed to get us the clash of cymbals in the Adagio that we so badly wanted (C major, 6/4 chord), as well as triangle and timpani; this pleases us no end.' Contrary to what is said in the first edition of the score, it is questionable whether the adjacent words in the autograph, 'gilt nicht' ('not genuine'), which would appear to revoke the addition, originated with Bruckner himself, since the handwriting is very different from the composer's.
—Leopold Nowak, 1954