Beethoven: Sonatas 30, 31, 32

For his first album devoted entirely to Beethoven, Alexandre Tharaud has chosen the composer’s last three sonatas: No 30 in E major, op 109; No 31 in A flat major op 110 and No 32 in C minor op 111. These works are considered some of the most difficult in the repertoire.

As the French pianist says: “I waited a long time before recording this Everest of Romantic music.” These formidable works were composed between 1820 and 1822, shortly before the 9th Symphony, and belong to the ‘late period’ that produced such mighty landmarks as the Hammerklavier Sonata, the Diabelli Variations and the Missa solemnis. As the Beethoven expert Elisabeth Brisson writes in the booklet for this album: “This last group of sonatas had a three-fold purpose: didactic, spiritual and promotional. Beethoven had to keep on offering new works to different publishers in order to earn a living, but he was also motivated by the desire to exhort future pianists to aspire to ever greater heights by writing music for them that exuded a lofty spirituality.

Piano sonata No.30 opus 109 in E Major
1. Vivace ma non troppo – Adagio espressivo
2. Prestissimo
3. Andante molto cantabile ed espressivo & Variations I to VI

Piano sonata No.31 opus 110 in A-flat Major
4. Moderato cantabile molto espressivo
5. Allegro molto
6. Adagio, ma non troppo – Fuga ; Allegro, ma non troppo

Piano sonata No.32 opus 111 in C minor
7. Maestoso – Allegro con brio ed appassionato
8. Arietta – Adagio molto, semplice e cantabile

The digipack includes a 60-minute BONUS DVD with the three piano sonatas Opus 109-110 and 111
An Ideale Audience production
Producer: Pierre-Martin Juban
DVD: Colour. NTSC systems – 1 DVD 5 – Stereo PCM 2.0
Menu language: English / Subtitles: English