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Beethoven Kreutzer Sonata

Musicologist Professor Natasha Loges chooses her favourite recording of Beethoven's Kreutzer Sonata. Beethoven's Violin Sonata in A major, Op.47, more commonly known simply as the Kreutzer Sonata, is one of the most technically challenging pieces in the violin repertoire. Leo Tolstoy immortalised the work in his notorious and daring 1889 novella The Kreutzer Sonata, which was promptly censored by the Russian authorities and, a year later, prohibited in newspapers in the USA. Beethoven composed his Kreutzer Sonata in 1803 and originally dedicated it to his friend and leading virtuoso of the day, George Bridgetower. They premiered the work together in May 1803 at Vienna's Augarten Theatre, allegedly sight-reading the entire work. Shortly afterwards, the two men fell out and Beethoven changed the dedication to the French violin pedagogue, composer and conductor, Rudolphe Kreutzer. It is said that Kreutzer himself hated the sonata and refused to play it. The dedication, however, has remained. It is a lengthy three-movement work in which a serene Andante with variations is bookended by two fiery outer movements. Presented by Andrew McGregor.

Om Podcasten

An edited version of the regular Building a Library slot where guest experts review available recordings of a work from the classical music repertoire and give a recommendation.