BEETHOVEN: PIANO SONATAS 8, 13 & 14"Moonlight" & "Pathétique"
Ludwig van Beethoven
LESLIE TUNG, fortepiano
Perfomed on a 5-Octave Fortepiano
"The present MSR release shows Tung to be a keen student of early music in general and the fortepiano in particular... Tung utilizes well [his fortepiano's] quick action and warm middle range in order to bring out the essential genius of a young composer who was to revolutionize the keyboard music of his day. In Tung’s hands the performances sound like compelling 'real' music, and not just informed scholarship."
Phil Muse, Atlanta Audio Club [June 2020]
PROGRAM NOTESPerformed by Mr. Tung on a 5-octave fortepiano built by Janine Johnson and Paul Poletti (1983), based on a c.1795 instrument by Johan Lodewijk Dulcken of Munich, Germany.
Unlike his early symphonies and piano concertos, which were premiered in large halls at gala public concerts, Beethoven’s keyboard sonatas were intended to be heard in much more intimate salons, with an invited audience of carefully selected individuals. This distinction was a reflection of his privileged, unique career as a pianist-composer in Vienna. After 1796, patrons such as Baron Gottfried van Swieten and Prince Karl Lichnowsky relieved Beethoven of the financial need to make extensive foreign tours. As a result, he rarely played in large public spaces, performing mostly in aristocratic salons. There his exclusive audience of patrons and professionals could indulge their preferences for learned, serious music, quite different from more widespread popular tastes. They would encourage Beethoven’s natural disposition towards daring and challenging experiments in his keyboard sonatas, and for music with innigster Empfindung – “the most inner expression”.
Pianist Leslie Tung has been recitalist at the First International Festival and Conference on Fortepiano in Antwerp, the Michigan MozartFest, the Connecticut Early Music Festival, Festival Indianapolis, and the Gilmore International Keyboard Festival. He has also been soloist with the San Luis Obispo Mozart Festival orchestra and with the Palo Alto Chamber Orchestra, and duo pianist with his wife Silvia Roederer at the Carinthian Summer Festival in Austria and at the Conservatories of Music at Beijing and Shanghai, China. In addition he has been guest artist at more than 40 colleges and universities, most recently at the Conservatoire National de Région Chabrier, the Academy for Performing Arts in Hong Kong, and the Royal Conservatory of the Hague. Tung began his study of piano in his native St. Louis, Missouri, but pursued interests in the natural and social sciences at Yale, earning his degree in sociology. His professional commitment to music was a result of intense study under pianist and scholar John Kirkpatrick. Graduate piano studies followed under Barry Snyder at the Eastman School and with both Brooks Smith and John Perry at the University of Southern California. He is Professor Emeritus of Music at Kalamazoo College in Michigan, where he taught a wide range of topics, including a course in the Structure of Scientific Revolutions. He is also a member of Photographers Without Borders on assignments to India and Guatemala.
PROGRAMLUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827)
SONATA NO.14 IN C-SHARP MINOR, OP.27, NO.2 “MOONLIGHT”
II. Allegretto &
III. Presto agitato
SONATA NO.8 IN C MINOR, OP.13 “PATHÉTIQUE”
I. Grave - Allegro molto e con brio
II. Adagio cantabile
III. Rondo (Allegro)
SONATA NO.13 IN E-FLAT MAJOR, OP.27, NO.1
I. Andante – Allegro – Andante
II. Allegro molto e vivace
III. Adagio con espressione
IV. Allegro vivace
Recorded 1-3 May 2019 at Dalton Center Recital Hall, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan. A Candlewood Digital high resolution Natural Presence™ recording. Produced, engineered, edited and mastered by Richard Price.