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With this disc, Ronald Brautigam has reached the last of the 32, completing a sonata cycle which has made a great impression on all who have been following it. A review in The Times stated: ‘Beethoven the revolutionary comes closer than ever in Brautigam's fiery interpretations.'
Brautigam has chosen to record these seminal works on fortepiano, and throughout the series uses two different instruments mirroring the rapid development of the piano during the three decades that saw the birth of these sonatas.
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 28 in A major, Op. 101
I. Etwas lebhaft und mit der innigsten Empfindung
II. Lebhaft. Marschmassig
III. Langsam und sehnsuchtsvoll
IV. Geschwind, doch nicht zu sehr, und mit Entschlossenheit
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 30 in E major, Op. 109
I. Vivace ma non troppo
III. Gesangvoll, mit innigster Empfindung: Andante molto cantabile ed espressivo
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 31 in A flat major, Op. 110
I. Moderato cantabile molto espressivo
II. Allegro molto
III. Adagio, ma non troppo - Fuga: Allegro, ma non troppo
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 32 in C minor, Op. 111
I. Maestoso - Allegro con brio ed appassionato
II. Arietta: Adagio molto semplice e cantabile
“There are few early-instrument practitioners who can match Brautigam's music insight and technical prowess...there are no holds barred in his impressively passionate account of Op. 111's opening Allegro”
“The clarity that Brautigam achieves serves to offset the briskness of the tempos and the gain lies in the clear structural cohesion, with momentum clearly directed...This lack of indulgence is a hallmark of Brautigam's Beethoven...and [he] always mantains direction...This survey provides some of the finest Beethoven playing I have ever heard.”