Hyperion Records

Sonata in G minor, Op 22

'Medtner: The Complete Piano Sonatas' (CDA67221/4)
Medtner: The Complete Piano Sonatas
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Sonata in G minor, Op 22
Performed by Prokofiev and Horowitz, recorded by Moiseiwitsch and Gilels, this one-movement work, completed in 1910, is the Medtner sonata which has so far achieved the most currency, and deservedly so, for not only does its powerful drama strongly appeal to the emotions but its coherence as a perfect organic whole on a large scale is also profoundly satisfying to the intellect. As Heinrich Neuhaus wrote: ‘The sonata’s trajectory is felt from the first to the last note as one uninterrupted line.’ All the thematic material is integrated and never ceases to grow organically right up to the massive coda, which is a true culmination in both synthesizing and intensifying what has gone before, with two pages of characteristically Medtnerian contrasting rhythms in the right and left hands. The sonata’s daring tonal scheme—a rising sequence of alternately minor and major thirds—is further evidence of Medtner’s originality in his use of traditional musical language and design.

from notes by Barrie Martyn © 1998

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