Piano Sonata No. 2 (Beethoven)

Piano Sonata No. 2 (Beethoven)

Beethoven's Piano Sonata in A major, Op. 2, No. 2, was written in 1796 and dedicated to Joseph Haydn.

Movements

It has four movements:
*I. "Allegro vivace"
*II. "Largo appassionato"
*III. "Scherzo: Allegretto"
*IV. "Rondo: Grazioso"

I. "Allegro vivace"

An athletic movement that has a bright disposition. The second theme of exposition contains some striking modulations for the time period. A large portion of the development section is in F major, which contains a third relationship with the key of the work, A major. A difficult, but beautiful canonic section is also to be found in the development. The recapitulation contains no coda and the movement ends quietly and unassumingly.

II. "Largo appassionato"

One of the few instances in which Beethoven uses the tempo marking "Largo", which was the slowest such marking for a movement. The opening imitates the style of a string quartet, and features a staccato bass against lyrical chords. A high degree of contrapuntal thinking is evident in Beethoven's conception of this movement. The key is the subdominant of A major, D major.

III. "Scherzo: Allegretto"

A short and graceful movement that is in many respects similar to a minuet. This is the first instance in his 32 numbered sonatas in which the term "Scherzo" is used. A minor trio section adds contrast to the cheerful opening material of this movement.

IV. "Rondo: Grazioso"

A beautiful and lyrical rondo. The arpeggio that opens the repeated material becomes more elaborate at each entrance. The form of this rondo is A1-B1-A2-C-A3-B2-A4-Coda. The C section is rather agitated and stormy in comparison to the rest of the work, and is representative of the so called "Sturm und Drang" style. A simple but elegant V7-I closes the entire work in the lower register, played piano.

A typical performance lasts about 22 minutes.

External links

* For a public domain recording of this sonata visit [http://musopen.com Musopen]
*


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