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SCHUBERT

Synopsis

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Fourth Week-Pianoforte Sonatas
Interpreted by EDGAR BAINTON
Sonata in C Minor, Op. Posthumous (First Part) :
Allegro, Adagio, Menuetto.
IF you were to look through the programmes of all the high-class concerts given in London during a season, you would gather that one of the favourite composers of the world was
Franz Schubert. You would also find that it was the singers that did most to keep his name alive. There would be a few orchestral performances of his Unfinished Symphony. Here and there a Chamber Music party would be playing his
Trout Quintet. Pianists would, very rarely, play one of his smaller pieces, or a long Fantasia called The Wanderer. The rest would be songs. The vogue of the songs is reasonable, for Schubert was the-greatest of all song-composers. But the almost total neglect of Schubert's Piano Sonatas is unjust, for these works, of which he wrote ten, contain a great deal of original and beautiful music.
A common objection to Schubert's larger instrumental works, such as these, is their excessive length-or rather a certain long-winded habit of which Schubert was sometimes guilty in laying out his thoughts ; the music, they say, is spread rather thin. Occasionally, it must be admitted, the objection holds. But it is no good reason for not playing those works of Schubert to which it does not apply, and of these there is no lack of examples in Mr. Bainton's programme for the week. The work with which Mr. Bainton opens his recitals is one of the most individual in the series. The abrupt opening bars and the rushing passages that follow set the tone of the FIRST MOVEMENT (quick), in which storm and calm are brought into contrast, with storm predominating.
The ADAGIO (Slow Movement) opens with a hint of Schubert's gift of melody making. As it proceeds, we discover that what promised to be an Idyll expands into a romantic Ballad, at times heavy with conflict.
The MENUETTO is a Minuet only in so far as it keeps to a steady triple beat and is formal in its general design (i.e., first section-second section -first section again). As a piece of musical expression it is disturbed and plaintive.

Contributors

Unknown: Franz Schubert.






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