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#2109199 - 06/27/13 05:15 PM Beethoven op 54
fnork Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Helsinki, Finland
Nobody plays it. How come? Just started learning it - wonderful, humorous and energetic little sonata, to my mind.

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#2109211 - 06/27/13 05:44 PM Re: Beethoven op 54 [Re: fnork]
beet31425 Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/12/09
Posts: 4015
Loc: Bay Area, CA
I was just reading through the last movement yesterday! It's brilliant!

But, really, I can see why it's not played much. The first movement, for all its wonderful moments, doesn't really paint a picture that I find cohesive or compelling. And I'm not sure pairing those two movements works that well for me either.

Of course, every single idea is carried out with the utmost brilliance, beauty and mastery-- as is the case with every Beethoven sonata (except possibly 49/2). But for me, out of all of Beethoven's daring formal experimentations, this is one of the experiments that doesn't quite work.

Which, in my view, is how things should be. I like my artists daring and ambitious enough that not everything quite works out.

Goldberg memorization progress: Aria -> V13 (45%...)

#2109248 - 06/27/13 07:22 PM Re: Beethoven op 54 [Re: fnork]
pianoloverus Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/29/01
Posts: 20552
Loc: New York City
I think some listeners may find the octaves passages in the first movement a little strange or unappealing. That was my first impression whenever I first heard this piece. But I just listened to Barenboim playing the first movement, and I don't feel that way after hearing it today. I'd guess that most listeners do find the second movement appealing.

#2109360 - 06/27/13 11:24 PM Re: Beethoven op 54 [Re: fnork]
dsch Offline
Full Member

Registered: 09/17/08
Posts: 325
Loc: florida
The Allegretto is not just appealing. It's brilliant! The syncopation is very fresh and unforgettable.

#2109377 - 06/28/13 12:24 AM Re: Beethoven op 54 [Re: dsch]
fnork Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/01/04
Posts: 1984
Loc: Helsinki, Finland
Here's a take I found very compelling, great sense of mixture of lyricism, humour and energy-

#2109480 - 06/28/13 06:26 AM Re: Beethoven op 54 [Re: fnork]
D. S. F. Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/10/10
Posts: 147
IIRC, Sviatoslav Richter loved this sonata, even programing it for one of the rare American tours.
Music does not have to be understood;
It has to be listened to.
- Hermann Scherchen.


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