Beethoven – Complete Piano Sonatas (Claudio Arrau)

Amazon: Claudio Arrau played with seriousness of purpose that could make other pianists seem like dilettantes and with respect for the composer’s score that bordered on veneration. He had nothing but scorn for pianists who played the opening of Beethoven’s Opus 111 with two hands instead of one because there were fewer risks. If something was technically difficult, Arrau assumed that the composer had written it that way because the difficulties had an expressive value that it was the interpreter’s duty to find. Arrau’s devotion to Beethoven is memorialized by this budget-priced, 14-CD collection of his recordings, mostly from the 1960s, of the composer’s 32 sonatas, five concertos (with Bernard Haitink conducting the Concertgebouw Orchestra of Amsterdam), and most important sets of variations. His Beethoven is not always successful. His sometimes ponderous seriousness keeps early works, such as the Sonata No. 3 and the Concerto No. 2, from smiling, and his lack of spontaneity makes the whimsy in Sonata No. 26 and the “Diabelli Variations” sound labored. But in the composer’s weightiest works, Arrau can produce revelations. Certainly, no one plays Sonata No. 32 better. The first movement sounds like thunder that comes ever closer and the finale’s chains of trills, played with exquisite finish and expressive perfection, transport the listener to a higher realm. If Arrau could be single-minded in his devotion to the composer’s score, he also believed that music could encompass everything. When Arrau was at his best–as he frequently is in this set: Beethoven – Complete Piano Sonatas (Claudio Arrau)–it does. –Stephen Wigler

Beethoven – Complete Piano Sonatas (Claudio Arrau) Tracklist

Piano Sonata No. 1
– Allegro 00:00
– Adagio 05:23
– Menuetto – Allegretto 11:08
– Prestissimo – 14:09
Piano Sonata No. 2
– Allegro vivace 21:42
– Largo appassionato 32:28
– Scherzo: Allegretto 40:41
– Rondo: Grazioso 43:59
Piano Sonata No. 3
– Allegro con brio 50:58
– Adagio 1:01:44
– Scherzo: Allegro 1:12:02
– Allegro assai 1:15:21
Piano Sonata No. 4
– Allegro molto e con brio 1:21:07
– Largo, con gran espressione 1:29:49
– Allegro 1:39:33
– Rondo: Poco allegretto e grazioso 1:44:47
Piano Sonata No. 5
– Allegro molto e con brio 1:52:37
– Adagio molto 1:58:25
– Prestissimo 2:06:59
Piano Sonata No. 6
– Allegro 2:11:38
– Allegretto 2:19:58
– Presto 2:24:00
Piano Sonata No. 7
– Presto 2:28:06
– Largo e mesto 2:34:51
– Menuetto: Allegro 2:45:17
– Rondo: Allegro 2:48:18
Piano Sonata No. 8 “Pathétique”
– Grave – Allegro di molto e con brio 2:52:33
– Adagio cantabile 3:01:39
– Rondo: Allegro 3:07:58
Piano Sonata No. 9
– Allegro 3:12:34
– Allegretto 3:19:16
– Rondo – Allegro comodo 3:22:48
Piano Sonata No. 10
– Allegro 3:26:17
– Andante 3:33:43
– Scherzo: Allegro assai 3:39:56
Piano Sonata No. 11
– Allegro con brio 3:43:23
– Adagio con molto espressione 3:50:53
– Menuetto 4:01:40
– Rondo: Allegretto 4:04:59
Piano Sonata No. 12
– Andante con variazioni 4:11:50
– Scherzo, allegro molto 4:20:38
– Marcia funebre 4:23:13
– Allegro 4:29:20
Piano Sonata No. 13
– Andante – Allegro – Andante 4:32:48
– Allegro molto e vivace 4:38:48
– Adagio con espressione 4:41:03
– Allegro vivace 4:44:32
Piano Sonata No. 14 “Moonlight”
– Adagio sostenuto 4:50:21
– Allegretto 4:57:08
– Presto agitato 4:59:36
Piano Sonata No. 15 “Pastorale”
– Allegro 5:07:29
– Andante 5:17:02
– Scherzo: Allegro vivace 5:24:54
– Rondo: Allegro ma non troppo 5:26:58
Piano Sonata No. 16
– Allegro vivace 5:32:05
– Adagio grazioso 5:38:40
– Rondo: Allegretto – Presto 5:50:58
Piano Sonata No. 17 “Tempest”
– Largo – Allegro 5:57:25
– Adagio 6:06:04
– Allegretto 6:16:26
Piano Sonata No. 18
– Allegro 6:24:08
– Scherzo: Allegretto vivace 6:32:49
– Menuetto: Moderato e grazioso 6:38:26
– Presto con fuoco 6:43:46
Piano Sonata No. 19
– Andante 6:48:53
– Rondo: Allegro 6:53:28
Piano Sonata No. 20
– Allegro ma non troppo 6:57:10
– Tempo di Menuetto 7:02:08
Piano Sonata No. 21 “Waldstein”
– Allegro con brio 7:06:12
– Introduzione: Adagio molto – attacca 7:18:00
– Rondo: Allegretto moderato – Prestissimo 7:22:38
Piano Sonata No. 22
– Tempo d’un menuetto 7:33:11
– Allegretto – Più allegro 7:39:25
Piano Sonata No. 23 “Appassionata”
– Allegro assai 7:45:53
– Andante con moto 7:57:07
– Allegro ma non troppo – Presto 8:04:28
Piano Sonata No. 24 “For Therese”
– Adagio cantabile – Allegro ma non troppo 8:12:51
– Allegro vivace 8:20:20
Piano Sonata No. 25
– Presto alla tedesca 8:23:25
– Andante 8:28:20
– Vivace 8:31:26
Piano Sonata No. 26 “Les Adieux”
– Das Lebowohl 8:33:33
– Abwesenheit 8:40:35
– Das Wiedersehen 8:44:23
Piano Sonata No. 27
– Mit Lebhaftigkeit 8:50:49
– Nicht zu geschwind 8:56:01
Piano Sonata No. 28
– Etwas lebhaft 9:04:07
– Lebhaft, Marschmäßig 9:08:52
– Langsam und sehnsuchtsvoll 9:14:58
– Geschwind 9:18:48
Piano Sonata No. 29 “Hammerklavier”
– Allegro 9:26:48
– Scherzo: Assai vivace 9:37:34
– Adagio sostenuto 9:40:07
– Introduzione: Largo – Fuga: Allegro risoluto 10:00:38
Piano Sonata No. 30
– Vivace ma non troppo 10:12:24
– Prestissimo 10:16:22
– Andante molto cantabile 10:18:59
Piano Sonata No. 31
– Moderato cantabile 10:35:32
– Allegro molto 10:42:29
– Adagio ma non troppo 10:44:51
– Fuga – Allegro ma non troppo 10:48:47
Piano Sonata No. 32
– Maestoso – Allegro con brio 10:56:07
– Arietta: Adagio molto 11:05:23

Beethoven - Complete Piano Sonatas (Claudio Arrau)

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