Playing Beethoven's 32 Piano Sonatas

Piano Sonata in A-flat major, Op. 26

This sonata represents a watershed moment in Beethoven's sonata writing, preparing the way for the innovative quasi una Fantasi sonatas of Op. 27. It is his first work in the sonata genre that does not contain a single movement in sonata form. As Charles Rosen suggests, the sonata is a collection of unified character pieces.

I. Andante con Variazioni

NOTES: The rich octave doublings in this theme make it easy to achieve a full-bodied sound. It is easy to overdo the sforzando chords that typically follow a crescendo. In order to avoid this potential problem, it is possible to use an agogic accent instead of a dynamic stress. To highlight the counterpoint in mm. 17–30, shape the music of each hand separately, only bringing the parts together at m. 21. The subito piano markings at mm. 23 and 25 can be enhanced by taking a little extra before playing the downbeat.

II. Scherzo: Allegro molto - Coming Soon!

III. Marcia funebre - Coming Soon!

IV. Allegro - Coming Soon!

Coming Soon!