Beethoven Odyssey -
'... the movement bubbles over with excitement ...'
When Beethoven moved from Bonn to Vienna in 1792, he sought to make his mark not as a composer, but as a pianist. That is not to say he didn't expend a significant amount of energy composing — performance and composition were intimately joined in Beethoven's time — but his principal aim was to establish himself as a performer in the courts of the nobility.
Given the historical context in which the early sonatas were conceived, it is curious how many pianists treat them as divinely inspired objects to be approached in the loftiest of manners. In other words, despite the variety of faces that appear throughout the set of 32 sonatas, we are given the impression that the overall spiritual plane, so to speak, is of the highest order throughout...
Copyright © 14 October 2013