Why Beethoven's Sonatas?
The 32 Sonatas by Ludwig van Beethoven are one of the cornerstones of piano literature. Hans von Bülow even called them "the new testament for pianists"! In this course Stephan Möller takes into account his 50+ years of experience interpreting and performing Beethoven's works, as well as Carl Czerny's book "About the right execution of all Beethoven works". Musical and technical instructions go hand in hand to bring forward a most accurate and complete understanding of each piece.
Czerny, Beethoven's student (from 1801 through 1805) and later friend, dedicated the third volume of his piano school (op. 500) completely to Beethoven's works. Czerny studied many of Beethoven's masterpieces directly under his supervision. This makes him an extremely relevant account when gathering knowledge about the authentic performance of Beethoven's works. Czerny pointed out how important it was to not only study the scores but to read between the notes, to get a feeling for Beethoven's intentions in order to bring forward the true character of each piece.
Czerny pointed out how important it was to not only study the scores but to read between the notes, to get a feeling for his intentions in order to bring forward the true character of each piece.
"If you can't handle it - let it be!"
Beethoven's style is often referred to as inconvenient or "un-pianistic". When comparing his works with those of Chopin or Liszt we must actually admit - it is true! The music of the romantical virtuosos seem to be a much better fit for the hands and the piano. The reason for Beethoven's unwieldy piano music lies in the origins of the classical era; the musical ideas emerged from thematically-motivated material and not so much from its instrumental realization. Full of despair about the frequent complaints by his contemporary pianists Beethoven finally wrote above his last piano sonata op. 111: "Wer's nicht greifen kann, lässt's bleiben!" - "If you can't handle it, let it be!". Beethoven was not only a revolutionary in composition but also of piano technic! His works require the use of technical aids that were simply not at hand for pianists of his time. What was considered utopic back then is doable today with the help of modern piano technic. This course attempts to master the technical challenges of Beethoven's works with an economical way of playing.
A lot of hints are provided concerning the peculiarity of his works which origin and can be explained in part by his personality and in part by major events happening in and around his life during these restless times.
Vienna, Beethoven and how this came to be
Since Stephan Möller's 14th birthday, Beethoven's works have fascinated him. At Beethoven's 200th anniversary in 1970 he decided to study all of Beethoven's works: the 32 Sonatas, 9 Symphonies, Piano Concertos, Violin Concertos, Chamber music - in particular his late string quartetts! He had the feeling that Beethoven's music was a language that he could understand immediately!
When Stephan Möller came to Vienna at age 22, he was captivated by the authenticity in which this city seemingly unchanged since 200 years presented itself. It was as if Beethoven's spirit welcomed him! Another 13 years later he was able to fulfill his dream of moving to Vienna entirely and to start teaching at the university. In 1994 he had his debut in the Wiener Musikverein with the complete cycle of 32 Beethoven Sonatas. He performed the 5 piano concertos already in 1986 after winning a prize at the international Viennese Beethoven competition. After his retiring from his teaching activities at the university he decided to condense the performance of all 32 Piano Sonatas from originally 2 months to 2 days and to perform this cycle in 32 cities around the world in order to commemorate Beethoven's 250th birthday in 2020. Well, we all know how that particular year ended and so he is now able to instead share his knowledge and experience about Beethoven's Sonatas with you.
4 FREE LESSONS
One surprise lesson of each Sonata
Grand Sonata Pathetique, Op.13
Sonata "Tempest", Op.31/2
Sonata "Moonlight", Op.27/2
Sonata No.1, Op.2/1
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All 4 Sonatas in a Bundle
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Contains the Sonata you choose.
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