A revolutionary man living in a revolutionary time, Beethoven used the piano as his personal musical laboratory. The piano sonata became, more than any other genre of music, a place where he could experiment with harmony, motivic development, the contextual use of form, and, most important, his developing view of music as a self-expressive art. Beethoven's 32 piano sonatas include some of his most popular works as well as some of his most experimental. More than any other of his amazing works, Beethoven's piano sonatas are his personal testament, expressed in his own voice.
These 24 marvelous lectures touch on every one of these fascinating pieces, approaching them chronologically, from the terse and powerful first sonata of 1795 to the revolutionary Hammerklavier Sonata of 1818 and the radical last three sonatas of 1820-1822.
The sonatas are not simply compositions for the piano but are about the developing technology of the piano itself, an evolving instrument that Beethoven pushed to its limits and then beyond, ultimately writing music for an idealized piano that didn't come into existence until 40 years after his death.
Because Beethoven died 50 years before the invention of sound recording, we will never hear his voice or the sound of his playing. Instead, Professor Greenberg plays you hundreds of excerpts of Maestro Claude Frank's recordings over the span of the course. Truly, Beethoven's piano music is his voice, emerging from his mind through his fingers to our ears and hearts.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.
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Amazing per ALWAYS
- Daniel Hauff
Too much talk, too little music
I wanted to hear the music and then about how it worked. Instead I got a lots of talk from someone who is full of himself and likes to hear himself talk.
Greenberg's annoying attempts to be funny and to use silly metaphors to try to explain the music. He sounded like he has spent too many years trying to appeal to uninterested undergraduates. He talked down to his audience and did not explain the music. I finally quit listening.
Disappointment. And annoyance that I spent the money and did not get value.
I will not purchase any Great Courses again as this one is such a dud.