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Ronald Brautigam releases his second disc of Beethoven’s Piano Concertos – this time offering a youthfully fresh Concerto No. 2 which was actually conceived long before the First Piano Concerto.
The programme also includes two rarities: the Piano Concerto in E flat major, WoO4, sometimes referred to as Beethoven’s ‘Concerto No.0’, and the Rondo in B flat major, WoO6, composed during the long period of composition of Concerto No.2 and probably at one stage intended as the finale of this work.
The Piano Concerto in E flat major, WoO4, was composed in 1784 when Beethoven was only 13 years old. It is a fully developed three-movement work that displays much imagination, harmonic control and sense of form, as well as a striking level of virtuosity. The work has survived in a contemporary copy of the piano part, incorporating directions showing that the original orchestra consisted of two flutes, two horns, and strings. For this recording Ronald Brautigam has made his own reconstruction of the orchestral score.
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Concerto in E flat major, WoO 4
I. Allegro moderato
III. Rondo: Allegretto
Ludwig van Beethoven: Rondo in B flat major, WoO 6
Rondo in B flat major, WoO 6
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 19
I. Allegro con brio
III. Rondo: Molto allegro
“Beethoven's early E flat Piano Concerto, WoO4, ought to be better known. The piano-writing suggests the alliance of virtuoso execution with an already distinctive musical voice. In later life, Beethoven rarely chose so charming a rondo subject as he does here... this superbly articulated performance by Dutch pianist Ronald Brautigam. His account of the B flat Concerto, interestingly coupled with a none too remarkable earlier finale Beethoven wrote for the concerto, is first rate...”