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Track(s) taken from CDA67819

Piano Sonata in D minor, Op 50 No 2

published in 1821, but probably composed twenty or so years earlier; dedicated to Luigi Cherubini

Howard Shelley (piano)
Recording details: December 2009
St Silas the Martyr, Kentish Town, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Annabel Connellan
Engineered by Ben Connellan
Release date: October 2010
Total duration: 19 minutes 3 seconds

Cover artwork: The Colosseum and the Arch of Constantine by Giovanni Paolo Panini (1691-1765)
Musée d'Art Thomas Henry, Cherbourg, France / Bridgeman Art Library, London


'This must be one of the most handsome of all recent homages to a lesser-known composer, with nothing about the performances, recording quality or presentation falling short of first-class … Shelley is a perfect advocate for this music, the limpidness of his playing being allied to utter sensitivity of dynamic and phrasing … a heartening achievement on all counts' (Gramophone)

'Each volume has shown remarkable variety from Clementi's fervid imagination … for all the temptation to compare Clementi with his more familiar contemporaries, a clear and distinctive voice appears through this overview of the complete sonatas. Shelley's technical security allows him to project a sense of ease and spontaneity … the complete set proves a benchmark which I doubt will be moved for a very long time' (BBC Music Magazine)

'This is a most attractive and sparkling account of Clementi's final sonatas and brings to a satisfying conclusion Howard Shelley's survey of Clementi … the sound captured on the recording more than lives up to expectations' (International Record Review)
The second sonata of Op 50, in D minor, is Clementi’s only sonata in that key. It is a consistently strong piece in which several of his oldest compositional habits appear, now convincingly absorbed into his latest style. The blustery first theme of the opening movement, for example, is set entirely over a tonic pedal point—one of Clementi’s oldest habits. The music in the secondary key, F major, has the abundant ornament that is customary in his late ‘lyric’ style, but was anticipated as early as the Sonata in A major Op 2 No 4, published in 1779. The slow movement, Adagio con espressione, is one of Clementi’s atmospheric, highly ornamented and tonally digressive late-period slow movements. There follows a witty Allegro with a brusque, home-spun main theme that we hear a number of times in rondo-fashion; this music undergoes sophisticated transformations that make for a satisfying conclusion to this strong sonata.

from notes by Leon Plantinga © 2010

L’op. 50 no 2 est la seule sonate de Clementi en ré mineur. C’est un morceau constamment robuste, où apparaissent certaines de ses plus vieilles habitudes compositionnelles, désormais absorbées avec éclat dans sa toute dernière manière. Le premier thème tempétueux du mouvement liminaire est ainsi entièrement par-dessus une pédale de tonique—l’une des plus vieilles manies clémentiniennes. La musique dans la tonalité secondaire, fa majeur, arbore l’abondance ornementale du style «lyrique» tardif de Clementi, même si ce dernier l’anticipa dès sa Sonate en la majeur op. 2 no 4, parue en 1779. De tous les mouvements lents du Clementi dernière manière, l’Adagio con espressione est parmi les plus évocateurs, les plus ornementés et les plus tonalement digressifs. S’ensuit un spirituel Allegro doté d’un thème principal brusque, sans afféterie, que l’on entend plusieurs fois en mode de rondo; cette musique subit des transformations sophistiquées qui font à cette vigoureuse sonate une conclusion d’une belle venue.

extrait des notes rédigées par Leon Plantinga © 2010
Français: Hypérion

Die zweite Sonate op. 50 in d-Moll, Clementis einzige Sonate in dieser Tonart, ist ein durchgängig kraftvolles Werk, in dem einige von Clementis ältesten kompositorischen Gewohnheiten nun überzeugend in seinen jüngsten Stil integriert werden. Das stürmische erste Thema des ersten Satzes zum Beispiel erscheint auf ganzer Länge über einem Orgelpunkt in der Tonika, einer von Clementis ältesten stilistischen Gewohnheiten. Die Musik in der sekundären Tonart F-Dur hat die in seinem späten „lyrischen“ Stil übliche überreiche Ornamentik, wurde jedoch schon mit der 1779 veröffentlichten Sonate in A-Dur op. 2 Nr. 4 vorweggenommen. Das langsame Adagio con espressione ist einer von Clementis atmosphärischen, stark verzierten und tonal umherschweifenden langsamen Sätze aus seiner späten Schaffensperiode. Es folgt ein geistreiches Allegro mit einem schroffen, simplen Thema, das mehrmals im Rondostil zu hören ist. Dieses Material durchläuft komplexe Transformationen, die diese kraftvolle Sonate zu einem befriedigenden Abschluss bringen.

aus dem Begleittext von Leon Plantinga © 2010
Deutsch: Henning Weber

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