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Magnificent Beethoven

24 AUG 09 JASON SERINUS

Telarc's new recording, Beethoven: Complete Works For Piano And Cello, features cellist Zuill Bailey and his frequent recital partner, pianist Simone Dinnerstein. The release demonstrates the composer's remarkable development over the course of his life.

In addition to his three delightful sets of variations on vocal works by Handel and Mozart, all of which were composed early on, the first two sonatas for piano and cello date from 1796, when he was 26-years old. The third was completed in 1808, when Beethoven was in his so-called "middle period," and is contemporaneous with the Fifth Symphony. The final two sonatas date from 1815, by which time he had lost his hearing. Their depth reflects the same quest for truth that blazes forth in the great Ninth Symphony, Missa Solemnis, Grosse Fugue and late string quartets.

Given the considerable beauty of these works, they have never suffered from a wont of interpreters. Such great cellists as Casals, Fournier, Piatigorsky, Du Pré and Rostropovich have teamed with pianists of equal stature (Horszowski, Schnabel, Gulda, Kempff, Solomon, Rubenstein, Barenboim and Richter) to create classic recordings. But with advances in digital technology and research into authentic performance practice, new recordings are essential.

From the first notes of the first sonata, the duo of Bailey and Dinnerstein displays its sympathy with Beethoven's vast emotional range. There's no way to take in the wealth of nuance on these recordings in one hearing. The more you listen, the more you will be rewarded.

  • Album Small
    Beethoven: Sonata No. 1 in F major, Op. 5 ...

    Zuill Bailey, Simone Dinnerstein, from Bee ...

  • Album Small
    Shostakovich: Concerto No. 1 in E-flat major ...

    Zuill Bailey, Martin West, San Francisco ...

  • Album Small
    Lasser: Twelve Variations on a Chorale by ...

    Simone Dinnerstein, from The Berlin ...

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