Daniel Barenboim: Beethoven Sonata Cycle & Diabelli Variations

Beethoven Sonata Cycle & Diabelli Variations

Daniel Barenboim is the current general music director of the Berlin State Opera and the Staatskapelle Berlin. In a career spanning several decades, he has received numerous awards and honors for his contribution to Classical music and is regarded throughout the world as one of the Classical world’s most notable and politically active figures. Making his debut as a professional concert pianist at the young age of ten years old in Vienna and Rome, Barenboim found critical acclaim as both a pianist and conductor across Europe.

Following his debut as a conductor with the English Chamber Orchestra in Abbey Road Studios, London, in 1966, Barenboim was invited to conduct by many European and American symphony orchestras. Between 1975 and 1989, he was music director of the Orchestre de Paris, where he conducted much contemporary music.

Barenboim made his opera conducting debut in 1973 with a performance of Mozart’s Don Giovanni at the Edinburgh Festival. He made his debut at Bayreuth in 1981, conducting there regularly until 1999. In 1988, he was appointed artistic and musical director of the Opéra Bastille in Paris.

Now in 2020, Barenboim has once again traded his baton for the 88 keys, by releasing a new collection of recordings centered on the Beethoven Sonata Cycle & Diabelli Variations. Titled 33 Metamorphoses – Complete Piano Sonatas & Diabelli Variations, this album presents Barenboim’s mature vision of these works as a legacy for his contemporaries and future generations.

When asked why he chose to focus on Beethoven and whether or not it was related to the infamous composer’s upcoming 250th birthday, Barenboim notes, “No matter how many times you play them, there are always fresh personal perspectives waiting to be discovered for the performer and for listeners. Beethoven’s sonatas, especially the late works – and the Diabelli Variations too, his last major work for the piano – lift us high above our daily cares and worries to a place where we can begin to see things as they really are, to understand what it truly means to be human.”

During the coronavirus pandemic, and in the extraordinary circumstances that hit humanity so hard this year, Daniel Barenboim returned to Beethoven and reimmersed himself in the scores of his piano sonatas. “Beethoven’s music is always multidimensional: whenever it laughs, it laughs and cries at the same time,” observed Daniel Barenboim. Beethoven’s piano sonatas form one of the most important collection of works in the history of music and represent the most far-reaching overview of the development of his musical style.

We at Michelle’s Piano highly encourage our readers and customers to listen to this new album from Mr. Barenboim, which can be found on both Spotify and YouTube.

You may find more information his website here.

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