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Beethoven: Piano Sonatas, Vol. 5

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Audio CD, March 14, 2000
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Disc: 1
1. Son No.19 in g, Op.49, No.1: Andante
2. Son No.19 in g, Op.49, No.1: Rondo: Allegro
3. Son No.20 in G, Op.49, No.2: Allegro Ma Non Troppo
4. Son No.20 in G, Op.49, No.2: Tempo Di Menuetto
5. Son No.29 in B flat ('Hammerklavier'): Allegro
6. Son No.29 in B flat ('Hammerklavier'): Scherzo: Assai Vivace
7. Son No.29 in B flat ('Hammerklavier'): Adagio Sostenuto
8. Son No.29 in B flat ('Hammerklavier'): Largo; Allegro Risoluto
Disc: 2
1. Son No.3 in C, Op.2, No.3: Allegro Con Brio
2. Son No.3 in C, Op.2, No.3: Adagio
3. Son No.3 in C, Op.2, No.3: Scherzo: Adagio
4. Son No.3 in C, Op.2, No.3: Allegro Assai
5. Son No.8 in c, Op.13 ('Pathetique'): Grave; Allegro Molto E Con Brio
6. Son No.8 in c, Op.13 ('Pathetique'): Adagio Cantabile
7. Son No.8 in c, Op.13 ('Pathetique'): Rondo: Allegro
8. Son No.24 in F#, Op.78: Adagio Cantabile; Allegro Ma Non Troppo
9. Son No.24 in F#, Op.78: Allegro Vivace
10. Son No.25 in G, Op.79: Presto Alla Tedesca
See all 13 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Performer: Russell Sherman
  • Composer: L. V. Beethoven
  • Audio CD (March 14, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: G.M. Recordings
  • ASIN: B00004NKGX
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #859,390 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Bradley P. Lehman on October 1, 2003
This completes Sherman's cycle of all the sonatas. I have this Volume 5 and Volume 4 so far, and have ordered the others; there is also a 10-CD boxed set. After reading his thoughtful and playful program notes here, I've also ordered his book, "Piano Pieces". There's an interview with him in the May/June 2002 issue of _Fanfare_ magazine that also repays multiple visits. Sherman is clearly a brilliant generalist, able to collect ideas from wherever they may be found, and use them in humble service of the music.
So, what does this set sound like? His performances are closely analytical, which is not surprising given that he studied with Eduard Steuermann (Schoenberg's advocate). He keeps the texture of the music lively and riveting: with careful control of voicing and timing he brings out all sorts of compositional details. That is, he's not content merely to breeze through the notes, but would rather show us Beethoven's creative genius at work.
This approach shows up especially in his rhythmic flexibility: the hands don't always have to be exactly together, and the tempo is a liquid...basically flowing forward but also taking little twists and turns around obstacles. And it's done deliberately, to bring out musical points, not just to get through passages that are difficult to play. That treatment of tempo is nothing new; it's a basic part of 18th and early 19th century keyboard technique, but too often forgotten today by players who focus on metric regularity (or the easy splice-ability in a recording, having all the takes firmly in tempo).
"Dynamics" are not merely a good control of loud and quiet, but of all the components of flow, and engagement of the listener's attention.
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8 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Phil Smith on July 9, 2000
Sherman's performance is that of an excellent technician plowing through warhorses. The Pathetique is the most interesting, but even then loses its momentum with the extremely liberal interpretation of tempo in places. The C Major is nearly unlistenable. Tempo and dynamic changes seem unrelated to the overall concept of the piece. The first movement in particular seems to lack an overall sense of wholeness. And the sparkling final movement isn't. Well recorded and proficiently played but where's the music? To boot, the liner notes are "new age" blather without real content. I was disappointed.
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