Piano Sonatas Nos. 14 & 29
Int. Release 09 Feb. 2018
1 CD / Download
0289 479 8353 8
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770 - 1827)
Piano Sonata No. 29 In B Flat Major, Op. 106 -"Hammerklavier"
Piano Sonata No. 14 In C Sharp Minor, Op. 27, No. 2 -"Moonlight"
Total Playing Time 55:39
. . . [Piano Sonata no. 29]: energised and propulsive . . . I don't think I have ever heard a recording of the first movement which sweeps the listener along with such a sense of cohesive inevitability; ten minutes seem to pass in a flash and every moment is riveting, Perahia's fleeting application of rubato enlivening certain phrases despite the speed of his delivery. The Scherzo is similarly rapid, devilish and mercurial. The third movement is perfectly paced as a true Adagio . . . thus the music unfolds with grace and profundity without courting stasis. The languid, limpid, lilting beauty of his playing here implicates Beethoven as a Romantic forerunner of Chopin rather than the firebrand of the "Eroica". Perahia perfectly captures the hesitant, ambivalent mood of the slow introduction to the finale, then segues seamlessly into the fugue, unloosing a torrent of astonishingly well-articulated runs which are always urgent but never rushed. Everything about his playing of the "Moonlight" Sonata is equally well judged; sentimentality and indulgence are eschewed in the first movement whose Adagio tempo, as in the "Hammerklavier", is just right. The Allegretto is light, winsome and "keck"; Perahia sees no need to apply a pianistic sledgehammer to this sweet nut -- but the left hand keeps us sternly grounded. The Presto conclusion is thrilling, sharing the same prestidigitatory virtuosity as the finale to Op. 106, and there is never any suggestion of Perahia losing control. Perahia's "Hammerklavier" has integrity in every sense of the word and the "Moonlight" here is a dream; this disc represents the summation of a lifetime's experience.