Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert: The Final Sonatas at Wigmore Hall

Mozart, Piano Sonata in B flat major, K570

Beethoven, Piano Sonata no. 31 in A flat major, Op.110

Haydn, Piano Sonata in D major, Hob XVI:51

Schubert, Piano Sonata no. 20 in A major, D.959

Wigmore Hall, London, Wednesday 6th April 2016

Sir András Schiff is traversing the final three piano sonatas of Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert in concerts across America and Europe. Twelve sonatas in total are spread across three concerts which celebrate the sonata form, “one of the greatest inventions in Western music” (Schiff), a structure central to the oeuvres of all four composers and a means by which we can observe their development at key stages in their creative lives.

andras-schiff

The triptych of concerts also explores the notion of “late style”. In considering Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert, lateness is relative, almost a philosophical construct. Haydn and Beethoven were long-lived (by the standards of their day), while Mozart and Schubert died young. But it is the intensity of their lives and creativity that matters here: for example, in the last year of his life, Schubert’s output was astonishing – the string quartets and Symphony in C major, the ‘Schwanengesang’ song cycle and many other works in addition to the three final piano sonatas.

Read my full review here

One thought on “Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert: The Final Sonatas at Wigmore Hall”

  1. I enjoyed your review of Andras Schiff but it has been known for a LONG time now that Schubert didn’t write the “Great” C major Symphony in the last year of his life. It dates from 1825.

    I agree about Schiff – I think he lost the divine spark some years ago and doesn’t seem to communicate nearly so strongly nowadays.

    Jonathan

Comments are closed.