Header image of page : BEETHOVEN / MIKHAÏL PLETNEV
piano recital


Sonatas Op. 2 No. 1 & Op. 111
Experience a journey through Beethoven’s piano sonatas, as Mikhaïl Pletnev plays homage to the composer, presenting the first and last of this formidable body of work, which spans almost 30 years.

Piano Sonata No. 1 in F minor Op. 2 No. 1
Piano Sonata No. 32 in C minor Op. 111

Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 1 of 1795 is the shortest of his Op. 2 set, but its first listeners would have been struck by its dramatic minor key, and by the sharp dynamic contrasts of its outer movements. Also by its additional Menuet, when usually sonatas had just three movements. His final sonata No. 32 of 1822 meanwhile has just two movements, which prompted the Berlin publisher to ask whether he’d forgotten to send its finale. It opens with a grand, sombre introduction, followed by a stormy Allegro with fugato elements. The following Arietta presents a transcendental, chorale-like theme which then gets subjected to increasingly rhythmically complex (even jazz-like) variations. Finally it appears accompanied by exquisite trills in an almost Mahlerian sound world, before the work ends in perfect peace.