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Hyperion Records

Click cover art to view larger version
Red Elisabeth Riverbank, Berlin (1912) by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880-1938)
Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen , Alte Pinakotek, Munich / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67977
Recording details: December 2012
Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk, United Kingdom
Produced by Jeremy Hayes
Engineered by Ben Connellan
Release date: November 2013
Total duration: 12 minutes 33 seconds

'Becker commands the structure of each work, and … is very impressive in the virtuosity of the Third. The new release also offers a set of Variations, discarded from the First Sonata: along with everything else here, this profoundly rewarding music—like Becker's playing itself—repays the deeper acquaintance of repeated listening' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Markus Becker draws out the First Sonata's exuberance and assertive power. The much shorter Second Sonata is also more immediately endearing, the Third confirming Hindemith’s stature as a supreme craftsman with a sure dramatic touch' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Markus Becker has clearly immersed himself in these pieces, instinctively knowing how and when to let Hindemith’s often-complex counterpoint breathe, and how to emphasise the attractive melodies. With excellent recorded sound and an enlightening booklet notes from Malcolm MacDonald, Hyperion has produced a noteworthy release with which to celebrate the music of Paul Hindemith' (ClassicalSource.com)

‘Bei Markus Becker … klingt Hindemiths Musik jedenfalls ganz und gar nicht hausbacken. Becker … weiß nur zu gut, wie man dieser Art von Musik zu Leibe rückt: mit Mut zum Risiko und ohne akademische Tüfteleien' (Piano, Germany)
PERFORMANCE
RECORDING

Piano Sonata No 2 in G major
composer
1936

Mässig schnell  [3'01]
Lebhaft  [2'08]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
The Piano Sonata No 2 in G major is the shortest and lightest in tone of the three—Hindemith himself thought of it as a sonatina. Whereas the first sonata requires a player of considerable power and authority, No 2 is consciously laid out within the compass of amateurs, clear in form and texture and with many passages in two- or three-part counterpoint. Two short, concise movements—the first as clear as Clementi, with contrasting subjects but no development as such, and then a tiny wisp of a scherzo—preface a more serious-sounding third movement which begins with gravely melodious slow music. It soon turns out, however, that these soulful strains are merely the introduction to the cheerful rondo-finale, alternately strutting and ambling in motion. Eventually the movement slows again, and a brief epilogue ends the sonata on an unexpectedly sombre note.

from notes by Malcolm MacDonald © 2013

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