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Beethoven: Sonata 12 Op. 26 in A-flat Major

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Ludwig van Beethoven - Sonatas :
Sonata 12, Op. 26
Sonata 12 Op. 26  in A-flat Major by Beethoven piano sheet music
Key: A-flat Major Year: 1801
Level: 8 Period: Classical
piano sheet music Piano score: Ruthardt edition (3366 kB)

Posts in the piano forum about this piece by :

xx Beethoven piano sonata no 12 1st movement
December 08, 2010, 06:44:57 AM by destinysora

How does one play the trills (with which fingering??) at bar 23 and 25??

xx Beethoven Sonata No. 12 Op. 26
March 23, 2009, 01:33:26 AM by iroveashe

This is a rather vague, and rather improvised explanation on Beethoven's Sonata No. 12 in A-flat major, Op. 26, 1st Movement, Andante con variazioni. This is mainly directed at Javacisnotrecognized since he asked, but I'd appreciate anyone's input into the subject.

The first part establishes the main theme, and is followed as usual by variations. The theme is rather soft and light, and after being presented it is repeated with a slight variation, which gives it a sense of progression, which is, I think, a key concept to this particular movement (and many of Beethoven's works) as a way to reach climax. The first variation is mainly composed of ascending arpeggios, which rest on a high note before releasing the tension on a lower note, after doing that twice that high note is repeated instead of being released right away. Second variation is much more vivid in contrast with the 1st one and in my opinion more 'attractive'. Contrasting again is the 3rd variation, which is quite dark and mysterious. Fourth variation is more sporadic, with different parts broken down, melody on one side, bass on the other and some seemingly random chords here and there, giving it a sense of instability and spontaneity. Here, on the lasts variations is where the magic of this movement occurs; it is, again, contrasting with the previous variation. For starters it's evenly covered with notes, like a surface, always following the structure of the first main theme very harmonically but it's just that for now, the melody is not entirely distinguishable, then we start hearing the melody with a different approach, very clear and cantabile, with arpeggios as background to achieve that sense of progression, evolution and climax I first mentioned. That variation was the climax of the movement, had the variations be placed differently we wouldn't get to this part with the same feeling, and as we enter the last variation we can clearly hear from the very first bar of it that Beethoven is saying goodbye and closing the movement. That transition between the 2 last variations always leaves breathless.

xx Beethoven piano sonata no 12 op 26 (3rd mvt) again
October 27, 2008, 06:59:32 AM by aewanko

with all my mistakes...

xx Beethoven Sonata no 12, op 26 (3rd mvt)
August 15, 2008, 02:57:33 AM by aewanko

Marcia funebre sulla mort d'une eroe.

xx Beethoven op.26 Sonata
January 04, 2007, 10:04:35 PM by paris


i wanted to ask for your opinion about tempo in first movement (as well as other mvts) in this sonata.
i did masterclass yesterday and professor (german school) advised me to play faster and NOT change tempo in ''faster'' variations (2nd and 4th). my original tempo was around 72, just to give you idea. i did also masterclass with another teacher (russian school) who told me it's okay change tempo, i mean, play faster in 2nd and 4th variation as long as i don't lose ''peaceful'' character and atmosphere.

first what i'm curious, you who did this sonata, what was your thema tempo and did you change tempo during variations?
(schnabel wrote 63-66 for thema, which is way to slow, gilels plays it and he exagerrates a bit for beethoven in my opinion)

what about other movements tempo?

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