An Autumn Sonata – a personal journey through Schubert’s penultimate piano sonata: the Andantino and the Scherzo

This article first appeared in The Schubertian (No 97 January 2018), the journal of The Schubert Institute (UK) Startling contrasts – the Andantino and the Scherzo The second movement of the Sonata in A, D959, marked Andantino, is quite unlike anything else that Schubert wrote. Described by pianist Jonathan Biss as “a composed hallucination”, it …

An Autumn Sonata – a personal journey through Schubert’s penultimate piano sonata

This article, the first of five, was first published in the July 2017 issue of The Schubertian, the journal of the Schubert Institute (UK). In the autumn of 2014 I set myself the task of learning Schubert's penultimate piano sonata, No 20 in A, D959, composed in 1828. My intention was to learn and finesse …

Repertoire in Focus: Schubert’s Impromptu in F minor, D935/1

Schubert wrote two sets of Impromptus (D899 and D935). Composed in 1827, his post-'Winterreise' annus mirabilis, a year of fervent creativity, the Impromptus remain some of his most popular piano works, particularly the first set and the third of the D935 (a set of variations based on the 'Rosamunde' theme from his opera of the …