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Piano Festival «Le piano symphonique» – The fascination of fantasy

Thu, 9. February 2023 | 12:30 UhrOrchesterhaus Kriens

Piano Festival «Le piano symphonique» ‒ Lunch concert

Worklist
  • Robert Schumann (1810 – 1856)

    • Etudes in Variation Form on a Theme by Beethoven WoO 31

  • György Ligeti (1923 – 2006)

    • Etudes: Automne à Varsovie, Cordes à vide, L'escalier du diable

  • Ludwig van Beethoven (1770 – 1827)

    • Sonata No. 32 in C minor Op. 111

Robert Schumann created three versions of his Variations on a Theme by Beethoven, using the theme from the slow movement of Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony. The fact that Schumann repeatedly reworked this cycle of etudes proves how close it was to his heart. Interestingly, these etudes remained unpublished during Schumann’s lifetime. Was this perhaps because he planned to rework them a fourth time? Regarding the etudes, Ligeti said: «Often a new quality can arise from the combination of familiar but disparate styles.» Tradition and innovation are also mutually dependent in Beethoven’s late piano sonatas, especially in his last, the C minor Sonata Op. 111. Although it still leans towards the classical sonata genre, it is a far cry from the traditional form. It consists of only two movements, and the second movement – Adagio molto semplice e cantabile – comprises a complex sequence of free variations on a quiet “arietta” theme. In the margin of the autograph, Beethoven has written his name twice. Could this be an indication of autobiographical traits in this sonata?

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