Schubert: Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960

This page lists all recordings of Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960, by Franz Peter Schubert (1797-1828) on CD, SACD, DVD, Blu-ray & download (MP3 & FLAC). Generally, more recent releases are listed first, but with priority given to those that are in stock.

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Schubert: Sonatas, Impromptus & Moments Musicaux

Schubert: Sonatas, Impromptus & Moments Musicaux


Schubert:

Hungarian Melody in B minor D817

Piano Sonata No. 18 in G major, D894

Moments Musicaux (6), D780, Op. 94

Allegretto in C minor, D915

4 Impromptus, D935

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


András Schiff (fortepiano)

Sir András Schiff’s reputation as one of the great interpreters of the work of Franz Schubert is long-established and he has always maintained that Schubert’s music is amongst the most moving ever written. Schiff underlined the point on his ECM New Series album with the C Major fantasies at the end of the 1990s, and he does so again on this remarkable recording. Two Schubert Sonatas (D894 & D960), the six Moments musicaux, Four Impromptus (D 935), the ‘Hungarian Melody’ and an Allegretto are addressed on a period instrument, the fortepiano. The pianist says: “My fortepiano was built by Franz Brodmann in Vienna in 1820. It is to me ideally suited to Schubert’s keyboard works. There is something quintessentially Viennese in its timbre, its tender mellowness, its melancholic cantabilità...It is in the quiet and quietest moments when Schubert - like nobody else - touches our hearts.”

Elsewhere in an absorbing booklet essay, Schiff notes: “Finding the right venue is essential. The room must not be too large, its acoustics, proportions, resonances and atmosphere should be ideally attuned to the needs of the fortepiano. Such a hall is the Kemmermusiksaal H.J. Abs of the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn.” It was there that these memorable recordings were made in July 2014.

“Schiff conjures wisp-like sonorities and never makes an ugly sound, and the Moments musicaux crackle with incisive effects. The smaller pieces work best, while the sonatas are quite difficult to sustain.” The Observer, 3rd May 2015 ****

“[Schiff] shows how [the fortepiano's] muted, delicate sound can transform Schubert for modern listeners. Two of the piano sonatas, the G Major, D894, and the late B Flat, D960, speak to us as if in an intimate tête-à-tête. The Moments musicaux, D 780, and the Four Impromptus, D 935, smile with informal grace.” Financial Times, 9th May 2015 ****

“Schiff’s Schubert is a known quantity: his comprehensive Decca set of the keyboard works remains a classic, but the sounds here are unexpected...Schiff, a self-confessed period-instrument convert, returns to the great G and B major sonatas, the second set of Impromptus and Moments Musicaux, making them sound hot off the press, fresh and new.” Sunday Times, 17th May 2015

“[The 1820 Brodmann instrument] sounds glorious: its tone and action seem ideally to suit these works…let us hope there is more to come.” Classical Music, May 2015 *****

Presto Discs of 2015

Finalist

GGramophone Magazine

Disc of the Month - June 2015

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2016

Instrumental Finalist

ECM New Series - 4811572

(CD - 2 discs)

$23.25

(also available to download from $26.75)

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Schubert: Piano Sonatas D664 & 960

Schubert: Piano Sonatas D664 & 960


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 13 in A major, D664

First International Release on CD

Impromptu in A flat major, D899 No. 4

Moments Musicaux, D780: No. 6 in A flat

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


This collection brings together all of Alicia de Larrocha’s Schubert recordings for Decca on a single disc, with her 1978 account of the A major Sonata, D.664 released internationally on CD for the first time. Opening with one of the most sheerly perfect melodies, which Larrocha plays with the utmost elegance, the major work on this program is her intimate reading of Schubert’s final piano sonata, the great B flat major, D.960. In between come two of the composer’s shorter pieces: the scherzo-like A flat major Impromptu and the hymn like Moment musical.

“For the Schubert A major Sonata she finds just the right simplicity and tender lyrical glow … the A flat Impromptu … is perhaps most memorable for a beautifully nostalgic central trio. Her essentially ripe, full-bodied tone is faithfully reproduced.” Gramophone Magazine, February 1980

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4807672

(CD)

$8.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Schubert: The Late Piano Sonatas

Schubert: The Late Piano Sonatas


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 14 in A minor, D784

recorded 2013

Piano Sonata No. 19 in C minor, D958

recorded 2013

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

recorded 2002 (re-issue)

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960

recorded 2002 (re-issue)


Paul Lewis (piano)

Paul Lewis is today regarded as one of the leading pianists of his generation, having won the most coveted prizes of the great classical institutions, for both his concert career and his recordings on harmonia mundi, topped by three Gramophone Awards including Record of the Year in 2008. He is also the first pianist in the history of the BBC Proms to have played the complete Beethoven concertos in a single season (2010). Early in 2011, Paul Lewis embarked on a two-year concert tour devoted to the works written by Schubert in the last six years of his life. Now completed, he has played in London, New York, Chicago, Tokyo, Melbourne, Rotterdam, Bologna, Florence and at the Schwarzenberg Schubertiade and the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées in Paris.

Read Presto's complete review of this disc here.

“While there's no doubt about the virtuosity and authority of Lewis's playing, there's certainly nothing superficially flashy about his performance either...throughout these sonatas I sensed a deeply considered performance where the primary concern was merely letting this extraordinary music speak for itself.” Presto Classical, 12th May 2014

“It almost goes without saying that this is piano playing of the highest calibre, to which the recorded sound does full justice. Yet I do have reservations about his choice of repeats...Lewis's is by far the best realisiations of [the slow movement off D959] that I have ever heard.” BBC Music Magazine, July 2014 ****

“Lewis is one of the best pianists I know for delivering both explosiveness of drama and the kind of melting expressiveness which draws you in, but without losing that inner core of strength which raises Schubert from genteel picturesqueness into an artist of granite stature.” MusicWeb International, 16th June 2014

Presto Disc of the Week

12th May 2014

Presto Discs of 2014

Finalist

Harmonia Mundi - HMC902165/66

(CD - 2 discs)

$12.75

(also available to download from $15.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Schubert: Piano Sonata, D960 & Impromptus, D935

Schubert: Piano Sonata, D960 & Impromptus, D935


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960

4 Impromptus, D935


Erato - The Erato Story - 2564633280

(CD)

$7.75

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Schnabel plays Schubert

Schnabel plays Schubert


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


Artur Schnabel in classic performances of Schubert's last two piano sonatas (D. 959 and D. 960).

Regis - RRC1415

(CD)

$6.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

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Maria João Pires: Schubert

Maria João Pires: Schubert


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 16 in A minor, D845

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


Iconic Deutsche Grammophon pianist and celebrated Schubert interpreter Maria João Pires returns to further explore the music of the quintessential romantic composer; deepening a musical relationship that has captivated critics and public alike throughout her career. The Portugese pianist has not recorded either of these sonatas for DG before and this recording of the brooding and expansive Sonata no.16 in A minor is her first for any label.

Both her DG debut recital and the acclaimed 1997 album, Voyage Magnifique, revealed Maria João Pires's unique empathy with the clarity of gesture and melodic line in the solo music of Schubert and this new album, combining the rarely heard Sonata No.16 with one of the composer’s best-loved late works, adds to her acclaimed discography of the composer.

“her performances are characteristically thoughtful – too much so for my liking. Pires’s approach is more high Romantic than late Classical, constantly oscillating between loud and soft, fast and slow, with the sort of artful phrasing that, instead of suggesting the music’s architectural scale and emotional anguish, ends up limiting them. She is at her most persuasive in the central movements of D845 and the Scherzo of D960” Financial Times, 9th February 2013 ***

“Pires has recorded Schubert's B flat major Sonata D960 before, as part of a series of Schubert discs for Erato in the mid-1990s, and in terms of timings the two performances are often strikingly similar...What remains unchanged is the patience with which Pires allows Schubert's music to unfold so naturally that nothing seems forced or contrived.” The Guardian, 21st February 2013 ****

“Here is a Schubertian still at the peak of her pianistic powers with the maturity of an interpreter who has lived with this music for a lifetime (she will be 70 next year). Even though countless great pianists have set down their thoughts on this sublime music, she makes you listen to Schubert’s genius with fresh ears...An enthralling disc.” Sunday Times, 14th April 2013

“The Portugese pianist produces such a consistently beautiful, mellow sound that one is liable to be seduced by that single element of her playing...Pires, you feel, lives in the sunshine and must surely play D960 to her grandchildren...Even for one with a lifelong affection for Schnabel, this is a B flat major to live with and savour.” Gramophone Magazine, May 2013

“Pires makes her anti-interpretation standpoint clear and manages to create performances which are uniquely communicative and fresh, keeping the ageing ears of this listener agape and agog from beginning to end...If you want to enhance your life with as ‘perfect’ a Schubert piano disc as can be recommended, then let this be your Elysian Field.” MusicWeb International, 21st May 2013

GGramophone Awards 2013

Finalist - Instrumental

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - May 2013

DG and Decca Sale

DG - 4778107

(CD)

Normally: $12.75

Special: $7.01

(also available to download from $10.00)

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Menahem Pressler in Recital

Menahem Pressler in Recital

Recorded at the Cité de la Musique, Paris, March 2011


Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 31 in A flat major, Op. 110

Chopin:

Mazurka No. 5 in B flat major, Op. 7 No. 1

Mazurka No. 7 in F minor, Op. 7 No. 3

Mazurka No. 13 in A minor, Op. 17 No. 4

Nocturne No. 20 in C sharp minor, Op. post.

Debussy:

Estampes (3) (Complete)

Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


For more than 50 years, Menahem Pressler was the driving force of the legendary Beaux Arts Trio, giving 6.000 performances until the trio stopped concertizing in 2009. Menahem Pressler is now returning to a solo career.

During this recital filmed at Paris’ Cité de la Musique 2011, Menahem Pressler plays two of the most imposing works in the piano repertoire: Beethoven’s penultimate sonata and Schubert’s last sonata which both require unusual emotional involvement from the performer.

Menahem Pressler is the last representative of a pianistic tradition directly connected with the great German and French piano schools: he studied with several pupils of the illustrious Ferruccio Busoni but also received valuable advice from Robert Casadesus or Paul Loyonnet who opened the world of Ravel and Debussy to him.

“Pressler’s ability to give all the voices prominence while simultaneously isolating the melody was amazing. His fingers still retain a youthful facility.” The Washington Post

Picture format: 1080i 16:9

Sound formats: PCM Stereo

Region code: all (worldwide)

Booklet notes: English, German, French

Running time: 88 mins

“His technique may be somewhat dimmed, but the twinkle of his distinctive sound remains as fresh and beautiful as ever; so, too, his astute pointing of musical structure, and the sheer love with which he communicates these great works...Pierre-Martin Juban's straightforward, well-judged direction provides a fine match between style and subject.” BBC Music Magazine, August 2012 ****

Blu-ray Disc

Region: all

Ideale Audience International - 3079664

(Blu-ray)

$32.50

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Schubert Lieder Volume 6: Schwanengesang & Sonata D960

Schubert Lieder Volume 6: Schwanengesang & Sonata D960


Schubert:

Schwanengesang, D957

with Matthias Goerne (baritone)

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


Matthias Goerne continues his Schubert survey that has already established him as one of the most gifted exponents of the song repertoire. Goerne does not merely ‘interpret' Schubert, he 'lives' each song and invites the listener to share this poetry and musical intimacy.

This sixth volume also features an unforgettable performance of Schubert's last piano sonata by one of the baritone's favourite partners, Christoph Eschenbach. Offered on a free bonus CD, this ‘second swansong' reveals hitherto unexplored resonances under his expert fingers.

“Some of those songs – Der Atlas, Der Doppelgänger – become exercises in gothic horror, others are slowed down to the point of inertia, though the group of Rellstab settings is generally buoyant and beautifully nuanced.” The Guardian, 5th April 2012 ***

“This new Schwanengesang is characteristically thoughtful and probing: we hear Schubert’s lyrical heartbeat at its most artless and unaffected, outstandingly so in the ghostly stillnesses of “Die Stadt” and “Der Doppelgänger”… The second CD is devoted to one of Schubert’s last piano sonatas, to which Eschenbach brings classical grace and refinement, never seeking to milk the Romantic doom and gloom.” Financial Times, 21st April 2012

“Their phrasing is exquisite throughout, with 'Die Taubenpost' sounding particularly pliant...Yet some of the Heine settings lack requisite weirdness...But for the sheer beauty and suppleness of voice, Goerne remains unbeatable.” Entartetemusik, May 2012

“The distinctive mellow roundness of Goerne's timbre, at once deep and soft-grained, and his care for a true, 'bound' legato are pleasures in themselves. He and the ever-fastidious Eschenbach invariably allow you to savour the sheer beauty of Schubert's melodic lines.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2012

“Goerne is showing an increasing tendency to capitalise on what he does best, exploiting his superb breath control in singing of hushed and seamless legato...[He] has both the breath control and the will to give full time and space to the long, long last lines of 'In die Ferne', and to bring to them a sense of dark despair as well as longing. He is also able and willing to dare extremes of pacing and dynamics in a spectral 'Ihr Bild'.” BBC Music Magazine *****

“sung with unfailing beauty and sensitivity, at speeds that are on the slow side and in a manner that’s more than usually veiled with reserve and regret. The air of contemplation also pervades Eschenbach’s tonally gorgeous performance of the late, great Sonata in B flat” Irish Times, 13th July 2012

“Goerne has his own ideas about the music and puts them forth with confidence and persuasion. That, in the end, is what sells this recording…A fine disc.” Audiophile Audition, 5th September 2012

BBC Music Magazine

Choral & Song Choice - July 2012

Harmonia Mundi Matthias Goerne Schubert Edition - HMC902139/40

(CD - 2 discs)

$12.75

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Schubert Live - Volume 3

Schubert Live - Volume 3


Schubert:

Ländler (12) D790

Piano Sonata No. 14 in A minor, D784

Hungarian Melody in B minor D817

Piano Sonata No. 15 in C major, D840 'Reliquie'

4 Impromptus, D899

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960

Allegretto in C minor, D915


Pianist Imogen Cooper continues her critically acclaimed Schubert Live series with the third 2-CD release of the composer’s late piano music, recorded live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall.

The highly respected and acclaimed pianist Imogen Cooper is enjoying something of a renaissance with her ongoing series of Schubert’s solo piano works on Avie. International accolades for the recordings abound, from NPR to the BBC, Gramophone to the New York Times. Imogen continues her exploration of the composer’s late piano music with Volume 3, recorded live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in December 2009.

Schubert was the ultimate romantic and Imogen brings out the full spectrum of his complex and colourful compositions, from the gentle German Dances, D790, and pearl-like Impromptus, D899, to the turbulent A minor Sonata, D 784, and mighty B flat Sonata, D960. Imogen says: “I’m not afraid of being described as a Schubert specialist,” even though her active repertoire ranges from Bach to Thomas Adès. “He has taken up a lot of my waking time for more than 30 years. In fact, you could say that his songs and his piano music have sometimes been close to an obsession for me.” It is more than 20 years since Cooper made a live and recorded survey of all the piano music Schubert composed from early 1823 until his death in 1828 at the age of 31. “One of the reasons I’ve taken it all up again is that I feel it ten times more strongly than I did 20 years ago: the message has become more direct to me. Schubert has become even more necessary to my well-being, and I sense strongly that he is important for an audience’s well-being too.”

“Cooper's sensitivity to the new light shed by remote keys is unfailing, and above all she tells the strange adventure of Schubert's most tormented A minor Sonata with unerring judgment. For this account alone, the latest instalment is indispensable.” BBC Music Magazine, June 2010 ****

“the poise of Cooper’s playing holds one breathless...Cooper’s sense of rightness of colour and her exquisite balancing of textures fully justify her reputation as one of the great Schubertians of our time.” Sunday Times, 16th May 2010 ****

“Imogen Cooper...offers a near-perfect balance of head and heart in Schubert, her expressive technique and musical personality wholly in the service of the composer...I shall treasure this performance of the G flat Impromptu, a miracle of heartfelt cantabile playing that made my eyes burn.” Gramophone Magazine, July 2010

“Cooper's articulation is precise, her tempi poised, the architecture clean, the colours cool to chilly. C minor brings out the best in her. The bittersweet Allegretto and blazing first Impromptu the most arresting works in a performance of clarity and integrity.” The Independent on Sunday, 1st August 2010

Up to 25% off Avie

Avie - AV2158

(CD - 2 discs)

Normally: $21.00

Special: $15.75

(also available to download from $20.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Schubert - Piano Sonatas Nos. 16 & 21

Schubert - Piano Sonatas Nos. 16 & 21


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 16 in A minor, D845

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960


'When he is at his best he plays more beautifully than any of us,' Alfred Brendel told William Steinberg, and described Kempff as 'an Aeolian harp, ever ready to respond to whatever interesting wind blew his way'. Brendel chose Kempff's 1953 Decca recording of Schubert's A minor Sonata, D.845, for inclusion in Philips' monumental 'Great Pianists of the 20th Century' series. The B flat Sonata was recorded three years earlier and has never previously been published on CD. In contrast with today's bountiful D. 960 discography, Schubert's last sonata was a relative rarity on disc when this recording first appeared, and it met with critical enthusiasm. 'Out of many lovely things in (the) first movement,' wrote the late and long-time Gramophone critic Alec Robertson, 'I will single out Kempff's playing of the second tune (F sharp minor) in which he achieves a perfect balance between the tenor and treble registers, and his instinctive feeling for the magical music hovering between D minor and B flat major, which proceeds the recapitulation - one of the supreme things in the whole of piano literature.'

In the 1000th issue of Gramophone (December 2005) the magazine asked its panel of reviewers to choose a single artist they'd like to hear perform just for them. Ivan March chose Wilhelm Kempff, and in particular, this 1950 Decca recording of Schubert's B flat sonata: 'Long ago, in my teens, I discovered the inspirational playing of Wilhelm Kempff. It is he I would invite to my command performance and it is Schubert I would ask him to play - the last, wonderful Sonata in B flat, for me the peak of 19th-century piano music. I heard it first on a Decca mono LP, elysian in his hands. But that early pressing had an irritating background swish. I tried to replace it but it appeared that all copies carried the same fault; it was some time before I secured a perfect pressing. Many years later I had afternoon tea with the illustrious Alec Robertson, whose enthusiastic review in The Gramophone had drawn me to the record. I gently took him to task about not mentioning the swish in his review. His eyes twinkled. "Ivan," he said, "the playing was so beautiful that I didn't hear the swish".'

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4769913

(CD)

$8.50

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

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