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Beethoven: Sonata 26 (Les Adieux) Op. 81 in E-flat Major

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Ludwig van Beethoven - Sonatas :
Sonata 26 (Les Adieux), Op. 81
Sonata 26 (Les Adieux) Op. 81  in E-flat Major by Beethoven piano sheet music
Key: E-flat Major Year: 1810
Level: 8+ Period: Classical
piano sheet music Piano score: Ruthardt edition (3328 kB)

Posts in the piano forum about this piece by :

xx First 3 chords of Les Adieux
December 31, 2016, 02:26:14 PM by wwalrus

Is there a nickname for these three chords (besides Lebewohl)? I've seen it used so much in various compositions. Brahms 2nd concerto, handel variations, and so many others. Is there any background info as to why these intervals seem to appear so much?

xx Beethoven "Les Adieux" Sonata
August 25, 2014, 05:04:05 AM by charmsjr94

Hi guys,

I've been assigned "Les Adieux" as one of my sonatas for the semester. I will be going over some of this stuff with my teacher most likely and I've researched a little myself. I know the basic history and have listened to some recordings but I would like to hear:

- any history/ background of the sonata or interesting stories.
- tips, advice, or warnings for the piece
- any important recordings
- general thoughts that you have on the piece.

I think knowing the piece is half the battle!
Thanks in advance

xx Les Adieux
July 09, 2011, 03:52:59 AM by yodaofpiano


so in tennessee each year, we have the tmta competition where middle school and high school students play 15 and 20 minute programs respectively and are judged and subsequently awarded 1st, 2nd, and so on. this competition normally takes place every may, so i've got a bit of time until i have to perform my program. my question is this: my piano teacher wants me to perform the first movement of the les adieux beethoven sonata (without repeat) in 4 minutes max; she'd really prefer me to perform this in 3:30 minutes. Is this a reasonable amount of time to perform this sonata? After doing a bit of searching on youtube, i found recordings by kempf, rudolph serkin, ashkanazy, arrau and many others performing this around 7 minutes with the repeat, many often going over. I've timed myself several times and i can't get this piece under five minutes. I just feel that this movement is so gorgeous and profound that rushing the first 10 or so measures or the last 30 or so measures in order to meet this timeframe would be so inappropriate. any thoughts? I should probably also mention that in this 20 minute timeframe, the rest of my program includes the third chopin ballade, and reflets dans l'eau by debussy. I was originally going to also play the Prokofiev toccata but we cut that thinking that i wouldn't have enough time seeing as i probably wouldn't be able to play it martha-argerich-speed.  Smiley    

xx Beethoven's sonata no 26 in Eb major - " Les Adieux" 2nd & 3rd movements
February 11, 2008, 04:27:24 PM by bach_ko

hi after the 1st mvmt of "les adieux" sonata by beethoven, im gonna post up its 2nd and 3rd mvmt...

they were messy and unprepared. i played lots of wrong notes Tongue

please give comments thanks

2nd mvmt:

3rd mvmt:

smiley Beethoven's sonata no 26 in Eb major - " Les Adieux" 1st movement
February 11, 2008, 02:44:39 AM by bach_ko

hi this is my recording of Beethoven's sonata no 26 in Eb major - " Les Adieux" on youtube...

please give comments thanks Wink

xx My recordings for the auditions next year
November 01, 2007, 01:09:50 PM by cardinals

Track 1 and 2 - Bach: WTC Book2 No.5 Prelude and Fuge in D BWV874
Track 3 - Beethoven: Sonata No. 26 "Les Adieux" in Eb Op.81a 3rd movement
Track 4 - Chopin: Scherzo No.1 in b Op.20

Recorded with 7-foot Steinway in CCM of Univ. of Cincinnati (Oct. 31)...THX

xx Beethoven - Sonata No.26 "Les Adieux" (All movements - recorded today)
August 23, 2007, 02:16:09 PM by cardinals


xx Beethoven - Sonata No.26 Op.81a in Eb 1st and 2nd movement (re-recorded ver.)
July 02, 2007, 10:02:46 PM by cardinals

I still think the rhythm has to be more consistent...but I will post another version anyway.


xx Beethoven - Sonata No.26 Op.81a in Eb 3rd movement (Complete version)
June 04, 2007, 02:47:08 PM by cardinals

I started working on this about a month ago...but honestly, I feel there are still many things to be done (this one is one of the pieces to be played in the audition early in next year)...I made a number of recordings and just selected one of them to upload it here...

Could you let me know which are the main things to improve and any practice tips for this?

Also, you will need to maximize the volume (PC and player) to listen to this...

xx Beethoven - Sonata No.26 Op.81a in Eb "Les Adieux" 3rd movement
May 24, 2007, 01:18:54 AM by cardinals

I'd appreciate any comments on this, too. Since I haven't finished practising the remaining part, and this recording is for the first three pages... Smiley

(High volume setting recommended)

xx Beethoven Sonata Les Adieux 3rd mvt (fingering help)
March 06, 2007, 03:11:26 PM by gruffalo

Hi, im having a problem getting one certain bar up to speed and the fingering that i have used feels awkward. the problem is with the LH in bar 67 coming down from the G. going up in that bar is fine, but it feels so awkward coming down that i cant get it to work. it is an awkward set of notes. the fingering im using for that whole bar is:

5(1) 3 2 1, 432, 12, 312, 312

I have long fingers and this combination just isn't working. Can anyone share that they use or suggest a better one for me? i have to get this up to speed in a few days because i need to play it at a competition on the 25th and hopefully at a concert a few days before that.

Any advice will be much appreciated.


xx choosing a Beethoven piano sonata
June 16, 2006, 04:54:45 AM by ben12345_5

I'm choosing a Beethoven sonata movement to learn next year.  My piano teacher gave me 3 choices:

1) Sonata No. 7 in D Major Op. 10 No. 3 1st mvt. Presto.
2) Sonata No. 18 in Eb Major Op. 31 No. 3 2nd mvt. Scherzo.
3) Sonata No. 26 in Eb Major Op. 81a "Les adieux" 1st mvt.

I think all of these pieces are within my technical ability (my previous pieces include Jeux d'Eau, Chopin Scherzo No. 2, Saint-Saens Piano concerto no. 2 1st mvt), but this is going to be my second priority piece.  I'll mainly be working on Busoni's Carmen Fantasy  Grin  , and I don't have time to learn and polish 2 big pieces.

Anyway, I was wondering if you guys could maybe give me a suggestion on which piece to learn.


xx Les Adieux
October 20, 2005, 10:05:59 AM by mycrabface

Has anyone ever tried sonata opus 81 a (aka Les Adieux)? I was just wondernig whether you're supposed to play the second part(allegro), bar 5 to bar12 using the pedal, because when I play the right hand part of it, it sounds terrible, like the notes aren't held long enough. But when I hold them longer, there's hardly enough time to jump to the next note(as my hand is very small). So what should I do?

xx Pedalling in Beethoven's Les Adieux
August 06, 2005, 05:23:40 PM by Jacey1973


I've just learnt this sonata (the notes at least) and i'm wondering for those who have played this/performed it, what do you think about pedalling?

I'm a bit out of touch with Beethoven haven't played any of his music for a couple of years and won't be having my 1st piano lesson till nearing the end of Sept, so i could do with a few ideas!

I'm thinking that the 1st mov't and 3rd dont need that much. But i'm finding it difficult to keep the notes really clear (because of their speed) whilst trying to pedal them a little - because i believe Beethoven needs more pedal than say Mozart with whom i am more familiar with.

Could anyone give a bit of advice - plus any other interpretative ideas you have on this sonata, i'm feeling a bit lost without my teacher's advice!

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