Top 5 Sonatas from the Classical Period: #1

#1: Beethoven - Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major “Hammerklavier,” Op. 106 From a listener’s perspective, the Hammerklavier is a novel of a sonata to get lost in. From a performer’s perspective, it’s a mountain that you either observe from a distance or set about conquering. Knowing my limitations, I had considered learning Op. 101,... Continue Reading →

Top 5 Sonatas from the Classical Period: #3

#3: Beethoven - Sonata No. 23, Op. 57 “Appassionata” This is stormy, angry, heroic Beethoven. Compared to the Pathétique, the stormy mood is more cohesive here. I love how the first couple minutes of the first movement almost feel like an improvisation, with basic musical materials scattered around and interrupting each other. Somewhere along the... Continue Reading →

Bernstein and the Piano

This article by Richard Walters was originally published in Leonard Bernstein: Music for Piano, Boosey & Hawkes, distributed by Hal Leonard. Used by permission. As his principal instrument, the piano was inextricably a part of Leonard Bernstein’s musical life. There was no piano in his family home until he was ten years old, when an aunt’s... Continue Reading →

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