Schubert: Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

This page lists all recordings of Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959, by Franz Peter Schubert (1797-1828) on CD, SACD, DVD & 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: Works for Solo Piano Vol. 2

Schubert: Works for Solo Piano Vol. 2


Schubert:

4 Impromptus, D899

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959


His Brahms series being now complete in six volumes and widely praised, Barry Douglas continues his exploration of Schubert’s piano music. The romantic, personal outlook developed in the course of the Brahms survey is fully expressed in this new Schubert volume: deeply characteristic works written in the nostalgic, yet prolific last years of the composer’s short life.

Throughout, Barry Douglas probes the romantic aspirations of Schubert’s writing, whether in the intimate melodies and contrasts of the impromptus, or in the monumental Sonata in A, the extraordinary range and technical challenges of which call for the virtuosity of the interpreter while plunging the listener into the illness, pain, and hope of the composer’s final years.

Celebrating the thirtieth anniversary in 2016 of his winning the Tchaikovsky competition, Barry Douglas continues touring the most prestigious venues around the world (Philharmonie de Paris, Ulster Hall, St Petersburg Hall, among others) and regularly appearing in renowned festivals in Europe (Clandeboye, Verbier, La Roque-d’Anthéron, etc.).

“Barry Douglas has always been his own man, an artist with a generous heart who thinks and plays big. His mixture of the darkly brooding and the urgently fiery makes for a temperament to conjure with: he can paint still waters, ravish shadows, and scale the Eiger… Celtic bard meeting Viennese poet, the dreamer and the storyteller, makes this second volume of Douglas’s Schubert edition for Chandos as individually nuanced as anything in his Beethoven and Brahms outings… Magisterial.” classicalsource.com, April 2017 *****

“the Impromptus D899 are played with style and elegance…No 2 flows seamlessly with admirable technique and polish.” Pianist Magazine, April 2017 ***

“Douglas allows the music room to breathe while rendering its structure with clear-sighted rigour…a marvellous account” International Piano, July 2017 ****

Chandos - up to 40% off

Chandos - CHAN10933

(CD)

Normally: $14.25

Special: $11.40

(also available to download from $10.00)

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Schubert: Wanderer Fantasy and Piano Sonata No. 20

Schubert: Wanderer Fantasy and Piano Sonata No. 20


Schubert:

Fantasie in C major, D760 'Wanderer'

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959


Sony musicforyou - 88875070842

(CD)

$8.00

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

Shai Wosner plays Schubert & Mazzoli

Shai Wosner plays Schubert & Mazzoli


Mazzoli:

Isabelle Eberhardt Dreams of Pianos

Schubert:

Moments Musicaux (6), D780, Op. 94

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959


Shai Wosner (piano)

Described by the BBC Music Magazine as being among "the front rank of Schubertians" (Schubert Sonatas ONYX4073 review) this new release will be eagerly awaited by all those who appreciate this wonderful Schubert interpreter. Wosner provides an interesting twist to the programme in Missy Mazzoli’s [b. 1980] Schubert-inspired ‘Isabelle Eberhardt Dreams of Pianos’, in which the young Swiss aristocrat and adventurer of the early 20th Century imagines a Schubert sonata ‘piercing her fading consciousness like memories from her former life are fragments of Schubert's sonata. Eberhardt lived a nomadic life in North Africa, dying at 27 in a flash flood.

“Wosner's interpretations draw you ineluctably into his own vision...[he] proves himself a Schubertian of real stature.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2015

“the utmost pianistic luxury...One of the most persuasive elements of Wosner's playing is his ability to indicate varieties of texture with tremendous clarity and subtlety. Overstatement just isn't necessary. His sustained notes, whether singly or in chords, sound unfailingly pellucid, crystalline, ethereally beautiful.” International Record Review, March 2015

Onyx - ONYX4136

(CD)

$14.25

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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

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Harmonia Mundi - HMC902165/66

(CD - 2 discs)

Normally: $13.25

Special: $10.60

(also available to download from $12.00)

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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)

$6.25

(also available to download from $10.00)

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Paul Lewis: Sonata

Paul Lewis: Sonata


Beethoven:

Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor, Op. 13 'Pathetique'

Piano Sonata No. 25 in G major, Op. 79

Liszt:

La Lugubre Gondola II, S200 No. 2

Piano Sonata in B minor, S178

Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 19 in C minor, D958

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959


Paul Lewis (piano)

Harmonia Mundi - up to 30% off

Harmonia Mundi Initiales - HMX290845657

(CD - 2 discs)

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Schubert - Piano Sonatas Nos. 15 & 20

Schubert - Piano Sonatas Nos. 15 & 20


Schubert:

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

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959


Severin von Eckardstein (Schimmel piano)

After Glazunov’s first concerto with the National Orchestra of Belgium and Walter Weller, Severin von Eckardstein returns to Fuga Libera for a solo Schubert recital. Eckardstein, an incredible fearless virtuoso, who also contributes his own booklet note, is ideally suited to the monumental D959 and unusually gives us the Sonata No. 17, 'Reliquie', left unfinished in 1825 when Schubert moved on to D845.

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Fuga Libera - FUG563

(CD)

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Schubert: Piano Sonatas Nos. 14 & 20

Schubert: Piano Sonatas Nos. 14 & 20


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

Piano Sonata No. 14 in A minor, D784


Jorge Bolet (piano)

Schubert and Jorge Bolet may seem rare bedfellows for a virtuoso who excelled in the music of Liszt and Rachmaninov and whose lineage extended, through his teacher David Saperton, to Leopold Godowsky (Saperton's teacher). But he finds in this music both muscularity and strength and his grasp of the music's visionary and often extensive and complex structures is revelatory. Some years after this recording, Bolet recorded the Liszt transcriptions of selected Schubert Lieder for Decca, and the ability to stretch and spin a melodic line in those celebrated recordings is omnipresent in this 'pure' Schubert.

Australian Eloquence - ELQ4801137

(CD)

$8.75

(also available to download from $6.75)

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Schubert Live - Volume 1

Schubert Live - Volume 1


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

11 Ecossaises, D781

Klavierstücke (3), D946

Piano Sonata No. 16 in A minor, D845

Piano Sonata No. 17 in D major, D850


Imogen Cooper returns to AVIE with the first in a series of 3 double CDs, recorded live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, exploring the late piano music of Schubert written between 1823 and 1828. The first volume includes the A minor Sonata D845, the D major Sonata D850 and the A major Sonata D959.

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.

Imogen Cooper has established a reputation as one of the finest interpreters of the classical repertoire. Having spent several years at the Paris Conservatoire in her teens, Cooper went to Vienna to study with Paul Badura-Skoda, Jörg Demus and the pianist often seen as her mentor, Alfred Brendel. She has appeared with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra and Sir Colin Davis and the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra with Sir Simon Rattle among many others.

“She is an outstanding artist, one of the finest pianists now playing.” Daily Telegraph

“These performances were recorded live at a Queen Elizabeth Hall recital given in 2008. Free from the confines of the studio, Cooper rises to the occasion with performances that show a courageous advance on her already distinguished work. This is true, most strikingly, in the great penultimate A major Sonata, D959. ...few more deeply charged or felt performances now exist on record. Cooper wrings every expressive ounce from the massive opening Allegro and the result is movingly personal rather than overbearing or idiosyncratic. Time and again she makes you sense the dark undertow beneath Schubert's outward geniality, the pain as well as the fullness of his tragically brief life. ...nothing is taken for granted and every musical shadow, whether passing or engulfing, is acutely registered.” Gramophone Magazine, September 2009

“the piano could not be more naturally captured, nor the feeling of live music-making conveyed to the listener. She displays a very special feeling for the composer's lyricism, and the warm colouring and fine shading of timbre are as pleasing to the ear as the many subtle nuances of phrasing, and her bold sonority at higher dynamic levels is particularly satisfying.” Penguin Guide, 2011 edition

“The range of colour, the subtle details, the singing line, the freedom of tempo within the driving momentum, the haunting and haunted beauty, are greater than ever. A joy.” Sunday Times, 10th May 2009 ****

“You only have to hear the slow movement of the great A Major Sonata D959 to appreciate that Cooper has the capacity to make the piano sing, in this instance with sighs of melancholy...Cooper has said that, after a career-long association with Schubert, his music's message has become much more direct for her. These discs show how eloquently she can convey that message to us.” The Telegraph, 30th April 2009 *****

Avie - AV2156

(CD - 2 discs)

$21.75

(also available to download from $20.00)

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Alfred Brendel plays Schubert

Alfred Brendel plays Schubert


Schubert:

Piano Sonata No. 14 in A minor, D784

recorded live 1984

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

recorded live 1984

Piano Sonata No. 18 in G major, D894

recorded live 1998

Piano Sonata No. 20 in A major, D959

recorded live 1999

Piano Sonata No. 21 in B flat major, D960

recorded live 1997


Brendel's 1987 recording of D784 was the Building a Library first choice. However as that is available only as part of a very large box set, this alternative is also recommended. This is the version preferred by Brendel himself.

“Brendel believes Schubert is 'mysteriously episodic', but doesn’t play him that way. Architecture is re-created by scanning ahead… and by binding movements together through tempi that relate to one another. Weaknesses fall by the wayside. Not, though, the melancholic songfulness that is an indisputable part of Schubert. It is heard in, say, the B major Trio or the slow movement of D960, but shorn of the lachrymose bleating that some pianists think necessary.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2006

Building a Library

Also Recommended - March 2007

Philips Artist's Choice - 4757191

(CD - 2 discs)

$13.00

(also available to download from $10.00)

In stock - usually despatched within 1 working day.

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