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The Music Room => Great Recordings and Reviews => Topic started by: AB68 on March 04, 2009, 12:40:08 PM

Title: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: AB68 on March 04, 2009, 12:40:08 PM
This is my favorite piano sonata, and one of my favorite pieces of music.
I currently have 3 recordings:
Wilhelm Kempff,  Mitsuko Uchida and Elisabeth Leonskaya.
Which other recordings would you recommend?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 04, 2009, 12:49:12 PM
Sviatoslav Richter, Prague 1972 (http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=45732805cf458166b5ad86680473e6606583907f94eaf5e3)

I have written some impressions of it here. (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,3196.msg264973.html#msg264973)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: rubio on March 04, 2009, 12:51:14 PM
From the versions I have heard I would go for Karl Schnabel on Pearl (or Music & Arts for his complete Schubert)). It's deeply poetic, insightful and just so right. The EMI transfers stinks. I need to listen more to Richter's various performances. Anyway, they are quite different interpretations, so both artists are very much valid in their own right.

 (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/414g5Wc-3gL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31VAG3Y4A0L._SL500_AA130_.jpg)

Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 04, 2009, 12:53:13 PM
The EMI transfers stinks.

You don't say?



;)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: jwinter on March 04, 2009, 12:58:32 PM
In addition to Kempff, I've long enjoyed Kovacevich in EMI, marvelous technique...

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41AVFPMQ4AL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

I also like Rubinstein:

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/21Y16V6S1JL._SL500_AA130_.jpg)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 04, 2009, 01:39:30 PM
...marvelous technique...

What do you mean when you say this? I mean: How can you hear this?

I'm serious. Thanks.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 04, 2009, 01:43:06 PM
This is my favorite piano sonata, and one of my favorite pieces of music.
I currently have 3 recordings:
Wilhelm Kempff,  Mitsuko Uchida and Elisabeth Leonskaya.
Which other recordings would you recommend?

This is one of my favourite sonatas too.


I agree with the Richter and Schnabel suggestions already made -- both are really very different from each other, so you really do need both. Richter wears his heart on his sleeve. Schnabel is more cool and patrician.

For a great modern performance I recommend Paul Lewis .

I also love the performances by Fleisher (on his CD called Two Hands) and Firorentino.

And those who have disappointed me. Well, Uchida and Kempff I'm afraid. And Curzon. And Rubinstein. And Perahia . And Horowitz. And Lupu.

Does anyone know the recording by Sofronitsky?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Peregrine on March 04, 2009, 01:56:46 PM
Richter, Afanassiev, Sofronitsky, Sokolov and Schnabel
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: AB68 on March 04, 2009, 02:37:42 PM
Sviatoslav Richter, Prague 1972 (http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=45732805cf458166b5ad86680473e6606583907f94eaf5e3)

I have written some impressions of it here. (http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,3196.msg264973.html#msg264973)

Thank you very much for that.
I am downloading the files right now.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 04, 2009, 02:38:42 PM
Thank you very much for that.
I am downloading the files right now.

Your welcome, I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do. 
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Drasko on March 04, 2009, 02:45:59 PM
I like Rubinstein (1965) for beautifuly sung Andante and Sofronitsky (1960) for restlessness of first movement.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: aquablob on March 04, 2009, 03:21:56 PM
Thank you very much for that.
I am downloading the files right now.


Ditto. George is 8)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Todd on March 04, 2009, 03:34:45 PM
There are quite a few good recordings, but Kovacevich's two recordings (Hyperion and EMI), Kempff's, Zacharias', Endres', and Richter's '72 (as an alternative) all hit the spot for me.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: jwinter on March 04, 2009, 05:05:50 PM
What do you mean when you say this? I mean: How can you hear this?

I'm serious. Thanks.

Well, I can't play the piano or read music, so you can safely assume that, to a certain extent, I am full of shit.  ;D

That said… basic technique, ie just getting the notes right in a reasonably proficient fashion, can be assumed most of the time – ya gotta be a pretty darned good piano player to get a recording contract with EMI, after all.  When I say technique, I'm talking about something beyond that, actually a number of things that I can hear (at least think I can hear them), and that generally separate the great from the so-so, IMO.  Speed and articulation, for one; the ability to rattle off a finger-twisting passage swiftly, making it sound effortless -- think Horowitz, to take an obvious example, or Cziffra. 

I'm also thinking of tonal quality, how they use all the tools at their disposal to give the piano a unique voice.  Think of Gould playing a fugue from the WTC, and then think of Richter playing the same passage -- anybody who's listened to a lot of piano recordings could immediately tell which is which, yet there are hundreds of pianists where the distinction is much harder to detect.  Sometimes technique in this sense can be used to artistically dubious purposes, of course (imagine if Gould recorded the Chopin Nocturnes – the mind boggles), but that’s another whole topic.

There are other qualities, that I could probably tease out if I had more time to reflect.  For me it’s basically subjective – it really boils down to how much the pianist’s sheer piano-playing skill (to the limited extent that I’m able to ascertain it) blows me away, when compared to others that I’ve heard.  Plus, it sounds more intelligent than merely saying “wow, that was really good!”  ;D
 
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 05, 2009, 07:45:13 AM
I like Rubinstein (1965) for beautifuly sung Andante and Sofronitsky (1960) for restlessness of first movement.

Right.

Even though I dissed Rubinstein's D960 I agree that his andante is beautiful.

And thanks for the positive point about the Sofrinitsky. I'm not really surprised it's good because he does the Schubert/Liszt songs so well.

The problem is that it costs over £70 from amazon in the UK  :o

Is his molto moderato so restless that it justifies such a price?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Bunny on March 05, 2009, 08:14:07 AM
Other great D.960s I love include: Leif Ove Andsnes, Andreas Staier, and Leon Fleisher.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/511ZFG1VNFL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)  (http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/1d/54/0bc2828fd7a01d1002144110.L.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51PE3qbHR3L._SL500_AA240_.jpg)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Drasko on March 05, 2009, 09:06:12 AM
And thanks for the positive point about the Sofrinitsky. I'm not really surprised it's good because he does the Schubert/Liszt songs so well.

The problem is that it costs over £70 from amazon in the UK  :o

Is his molto moderato so restless that it justifies such a price?

No CD justifies £70. You can get it from Japan for about 20, shipping included.

http://www.cdjapan.co.jp/detailview.html?KEY=COCQ-83667
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: rubio on March 05, 2009, 09:37:45 AM
No CD justifies £70. You can get it from Japan for about 20, shipping included.

http://www.cdjapan.co.jp/detailview.html?KEY=COCQ-83667

How does that 1960 performance compare to the 1956 one included in the Brilliant Classics Sofronitsky set?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 05, 2009, 11:18:33 AM
How does that 1960 performance compare to the 1956 one included in the Brilliant Classics Sofronitsky set?

Ahh -- I see that things are more complicated than I first thought ;D
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Holden on March 05, 2009, 12:07:18 PM
This  is also one of my favourrite sonatas.
Richter's very slow first movement is well worth hearing but not my top choice.

Both the Kovacevich versions are excellent and I can't pick between them.

Schnabel is another top choice.

But nobody has mentioned my favourite - Clara Haskil.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: aquablob on March 05, 2009, 12:09:30 PM
I've seen Lupu's recording take some flak in the past, but I find it superb (and the sound quality is excellent)!
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 05, 2009, 12:17:28 PM
I've seen Lupu's recording take some flak in the past, but I find it superb (and the sound quality is excellent)!

One day I will buy his Schubert Decca set.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Drasko on March 05, 2009, 02:25:04 PM
How does that 1960 performance compare to the 1956 one included in the Brilliant Classics Sofronitsky set?

No idea.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 05, 2009, 09:40:40 PM
I've seen Lupu's recording take some flak in the past, but I find it superb (and the sound quality is excellent)!
I like Lupu and I like all his Schubert discs -- but not the D960. I was disappointed; it just doesn't have enough emotional impact IMO.

And that's odd -- because Lupu in his other Schubert discs wears his heart on his sleeve.

But nobody has mentioned my favourite - Clara Haskil.

I would like to hear this -- is there a recording you recommend?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Herman on March 05, 2009, 10:49:26 PM
And that's odd -- because Lupu in his other Schubert discs wears his heart on his sleeve.

Do you really think so? That is not an expression I'd associate with Lupu.

Quote
I would like to hear this -- is there a recording you recommend?

There's only one Haskil recording, for Philips.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: orbital on March 06, 2009, 01:24:46 AM
How does that 1960 performance compare to the 1956 one included in the Brilliant Classics Sofronitsky set?
If I am not mistaken, I only have the Brilliant Box Set one, so I can't compare. As a matter of fact, I was listening to this very rendition last night. The first movement has a bit too much excitement thrown in, and sounds a bit pushed too hard, but the rest is excellent.

My favorite has to be Richter's with the 25 minute 1st movement (I forgot from which set it was  ;D)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Holden on March 06, 2009, 02:03:51 PM

There's only one Haskil recording, for Philips.

But it has been re-recorded on a number of other labels

here is one source (http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/Drilldown?name_id1=10889&name_role1=1&name_id2=17048&name_role2=2&bcorder=21&comp_id=2683)

I have it as part of this two disc set

(http://g-ecx.images-amazon.com/images/G/01/ciu/cd/9e/f88f810ae7a05f7ea155a110.L._AA240_.jpg)

also this which is the original concert.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41PQZPMQHKL._SL500_AA240_.jpg)

You can pick and choose depending on what else you want to hear but the one I've got suits me. BTW, her Scarlatti is excellent.

Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 06, 2009, 10:41:01 PM
Is that a pussy cat she's holding?

If so it must be the only classical recording to feature the performer's pet (good for quizes)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Herman on March 07, 2009, 01:10:36 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61YF4DCAP4L._SS500_.gif)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: The new erato on March 07, 2009, 01:57:58 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61YF4DCAP4L._SS500_.gif)
I somehow doubt Alfred would play a Schubert sonata thinking it was Mozart.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: The new erato on March 07, 2009, 02:02:07 AM
I'm playing Geza Anda's version from the recent Brilliant box for the first time and initially finding it very lyrical and convincing. Didn't care much for his Diabellis on the same disc however, finding it lacking in Beethovenian thunder.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: orbital on March 07, 2009, 03:09:16 AM
My favorite has to be Richter's with the 25 minute 1st movement (I forgot from which set it was  ;D)
It is not from a set but from an unpublished Budapest recital from the 60s. The recorded piano sound is a bit thin, but the playing is superb.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 07, 2009, 04:04:46 AM
It is not from a set but from an unpublished Budapest recital from the 60s. The recorded piano sound is a bit thin, but the playing is superb.

Have you heard the one that I preferred in my review on the Richter thread? Live in Prague, 1972 on Praga. I know that you have it, it's from the big Praga box.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: orbital on March 07, 2009, 05:06:16 AM
Have you heard the one that I preferred in my review on the Richter thread? Live in Prague, 1972 on Praga. I know that you have it, it's from the big Praga box.
I probably do know it, but I have to relisten to it. Whenever I have an urge for D960/ Richter I go to that recital recording. I will relisten to it tonight
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: dirkronk on March 07, 2009, 10:40:44 AM
But nobody has mentioned my favourite - Clara Haskil.

I'd have to go along with this...though yes, the Schnabel too is certainly worth the listen.

This is taxing my aging memory, but I seem to recall reacting favorably to Curzon on LP (Decca/London) many years ago; not sure if I even still have it, though.

I know that I have a number of others, including Richter of course. Guess I need to do a review of my collection one of these fine days, just to see what I DO have...
 ;)

Dirk

Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 07, 2009, 11:24:42 AM
This is taxing my aging memory, but I seem to recall reacting favorably to Curzon on LP (Decca/London) many years ago; not sure if I even still have it, though.


 ;)

Dirk

I love Curzon, but I really have been disappointed with his D960s on record that I know. He was very variable, apparently.

I'd be interested if you find you do like it though.

(off topic -- but  Curzon's performance of the C minor impromptu is coming with me to the desert island)


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61YF4DCAP4L._SS500_.gif)

You guys are too clever by half.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: orbital on March 09, 2009, 04:00:03 AM
Have you heard the one that I preferred in my review on the Richter thread? Live in Prague, 1972 on Praga. I know that you have it, it's from the big Praga box.
es
I've listened to it over the weekend. It is indeed very beautiful.  These two are pretty similar with a 25 min first movement and a tastefully subdued manner.
Do you know the recital rec I am talking about?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 09, 2009, 04:46:12 AM
es
I've listened to it over the weekend. It is indeed very beautiful.  These two are pretty similar with a 25 min first movement and a tastefully subdued manner.
Do you know the recital rec I am talking about?

I don't think so. I can check when I get home.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: The new erato on March 09, 2009, 06:09:27 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61YF4DCAP4L._SS500_.gif)
How do you know its the performers pet?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on March 09, 2009, 08:14:49 AM
How do you know its the performers pet?

By the way he lifts his tail, arches his back and gazes lovingly.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: The new erato on March 09, 2009, 10:04:12 AM
By the way he lifts his tail, arches his back and gazes lovingly.
I don't see Alfred's tail but his back is slighty arched indeed, and no doubt his gaze is loving behind his thick lenses.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: dirkronk on March 09, 2009, 12:20:41 PM
I don't see Alfred's tail but his back is slighty arched indeed, and no doubt his gaze is loving behind his thick lenses.

That's the reason you seldom see Brendel grinning broadly while staring directly into the camera: his similarity to the Cheshire Cat is all too frighteningly obvious.
 ;)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: ezodisy on March 09, 2009, 01:33:50 PM
where the hell did Drasko go?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Gurn Blanston on March 09, 2009, 01:39:59 PM
where the hell did Drasko go?

Actually, I was going to ask you, since you seem to know him better than any of us. He canceled overnight Saturday, with no apparent precipitating factor... :-\

8)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 09, 2009, 01:41:23 PM
Actually, I was going to ask you, since you seem to know him better than any of us. He canceled overnight Saturday, with no apparent precipitating factor... :-\

8)

I noticed that too. I assumed he'd be back.  :-\
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: ezodisy on March 09, 2009, 02:30:29 PM
I don't know Gurn. Time to put on my Sherlock Holmes cape
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 09, 2009, 02:34:05 PM
I don't know Gurn. Time to put on my Sherlock Holmes cape

Someone gotta have his email, maybe orbital?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: ezodisy on March 09, 2009, 02:34:46 PM
yeah. I have it somewhere too I think. Someone start a petition
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: nut-job on March 09, 2009, 02:37:44 PM
where the hell did Drasko go?

I blame myself, for insensitive remarks about Glazunov.   :-[
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: ezodisy on March 09, 2009, 02:44:35 PM
Don't feel bad nut-job, Glazunov sucks (http://operawebclub.com/papageno/style_emoticons/default/good.gif)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: nut-job on March 09, 2009, 02:47:33 PM
Don't feel bad nut-job, Glazunov sucks (http://operawebclub.com/papageno/style_emoticons/default/good.gif)

Shhhhhh!  That's crazy talk!  You'll get us banished to the land of M forever.   :o
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Bulldog on March 09, 2009, 02:56:22 PM
Don't feel bad nut-job, Glazunov sucks (http://operawebclub.com/papageno/style_emoticons/default/good.gif)

If that's the case, Schubert symphonies also suck.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Bulldog on March 09, 2009, 02:57:51 PM
I blame myself, for insensitive remarks about Glazunov.   :-[

Who's your next victim?
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: nut-job on March 09, 2009, 03:05:34 PM
Who's your next victim?

As long as you asked, I plan to drive you off the board with a flippant remark to the effect that Bach's Schubler Chorales are tedious.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Bulldog on March 09, 2009, 05:07:55 PM
As long as you asked, I plan to drive you off the board with a flippant remark to the effect that Bach's Schubler Chorales are tedious.


You'll have to do a lot better than the above.  Those Chorales are not dear to me, although I don't hate them like you do.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: The new erato on March 09, 2009, 10:19:25 PM
If one can't stand negative comments on Glazunov, one has thin skin indeed. OTOH if one loves a composer, what does it matter what others think? Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: orbital on March 09, 2009, 10:38:46 PM
Someone gotta have his email, maybe orbital?
I'll shoot him an e-mail. I can't imagine him being upset over Glazunov. Now, if it was de Falla it'd be different   :P
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 10, 2009, 04:29:11 AM
I can't see Drasko getting upset at all.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: nut-job on March 10, 2009, 05:16:24 AM
You'll have to do a lot better than the above.  Those Chorales are not dear to me, although I don't hate them like you do.

Off your back like water, you're a tough one, you.  I could probably claim to suffer ennui during the Passacaglia and Fugue in c-minor and you wouldn't even flinch.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Bulldog on March 10, 2009, 01:09:48 PM
Off your back like water, you're a tough one, you.  I could probably claim to suffer ennui during the Passacaglia and Fugue in c-minor and you wouldn't even flinch.


Right, no flinching, even if you suffer a stroke.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: XB-70 Valkyrie on March 15, 2009, 09:32:56 PM
Well?  >:(
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Dr. Dread on March 16, 2009, 04:32:21 AM
Schubert's
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: sul G on March 16, 2009, 04:57:13 AM
Yes, but the sound quality on that recording isn't up to much, I'm sure you agree...
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: George on March 16, 2009, 05:00:13 AM
Well?  >:(

The one that you enjoy the most.  8)

Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: nut-job on March 16, 2009, 11:51:59 AM
Deja vu all over again.

http://www.good-music-guide.com/community/index.php/topic,11432.0.html
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Jo498 on August 11, 2017, 04:39:26 AM
Does anyone know of a discography?

I am wondering about the tempo indication and tempo of the first movement. "Molto moderato" is very uncommon and usually used a modifier, e.g. in "Allegro molto moderato" (although this particular combination is also uncommon). In Haydn and Beethoven "Moderato" movements are often highly embellished with figurations in (demi-semi? semi-demi-quavers) whereas Schubert's figurations (like the turn at the end of the second theme) are 16ths, there are only a few arpeggio flourishes with 32nds, also tone repetitions in triplets that seem to indicate a fairly flowing tempo.

Now there is the curious fact, that "early" recordings of that sonata tend to a comparably brisk tempo, basically an "Allegro moderato", close to the first movement of Beethoven's trio op.97 that shares the key and has a somewhat similar main theme. In fact, of the fastest interpretations I find, all but one (Lupu) are before 1970 or by "older" pianists born in the early 20th century. (unless indicated without exposition repeat)

Schnabel 1937 13:54
Wührer 1950s 12:31
Erdmann 1951 (Radio Bremen, there are more recordings/broadcasts but I have only this)  12:13
Annie Fischer 1960 12:45
Horowitz (date?) 13:07 (Urania, not sure where this stems from, his late DG is 19:14 incl. the repeat which is still faster than "typical" more recent performances)
Curzon (rec date? in Decca box) 13:15
Lupu 18:15 (incl. repeat would be ca. 13:30 without)
Haskil (?) 13:41 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqd7VG21Apw
Sofronitsky 1956 14:03 (there is another much slower one at 17:30 on youtube)
Rubinstein 14:17 (there is later slower one)

With repeat they would take ca. 17-19 min.
Nowadays almost all pianists take the repeat and they are typically around 20-22 min; the fastest "recent" one I am aware of (but there are probably many I have not checked) is Lupu and he is faster than Schnabel but considerably slower than Wührer, Fischer or Erdmann.

Now in the meantime there obviously was Richter who played that movement very slowly, ca. 24 minutes (w/ repeat).
While most more recent interpretations don't go quite that slow (except for some outliers, Afanassiev at >28 min...) they all seem to agree on a far more "moderate" tempo than most 50-60 years.
As Schubert's sonatas were not played frequently before the mid-20th century, one can wonder if those earlier pianists simply assumed that "molto moderato" would be modifying an implicit "allegro" and if they were correct in this. Or if Richter and his followers are correct and this is a considerably slower movement.

There is another movement with the same tempo indication (but 12/8 time), the first one of D 894. Richter is even slower here but fewer have followed him. Because of the different time signature etc. I don't think a comparison helps much to get a plausible tempo for D 960,i. The first mvmt. of D 887 has "Allegro molto moderato", this is in 3/4 and does have 16th triplets figurations and very quite different themes, so again, not much help here.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on August 11, 2017, 08:51:04 AM
Afanassiev took about 28 minutes for the Denon, but seemed to rethink the approach for the ECM recording which takes about 22 minutes.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on August 11, 2017, 09:01:36 AM
Can we talk about Arrau's 960 - I think it's sensational, the balance of the voices is really revealing. It's becoming my favourite 960.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Turner on August 11, 2017, 09:22:07 AM
Quote
I am wondering about the tempo indication and tempo of the first movement. "Molto moderato" is very uncommon and usually used a modifier, e.g. in "Allegro molto moderato" (although this particular combination is also uncommon). In Haydn and Beethoven "Moderato" movements are often highly embellished with figurations in (demi-semi? semi-demi-quavers) whereas Schubert's figurations (like the turn at the end of the second theme) are 16ths, there are only a few arpeggio flourishes with 32nds, also tone repetitions in triplets that seem to indicate a fairly flowing tempo.

Now there is the curious fact, that "early" recordings of that sonata tend to a comparably brisk tempo, basically an "Allegro moderato", close to the first movement of Beethoven's trio op.97 that shares the key and has a somewhat similar main theme. In fact, of the fastest interpretations I find, all but one (Lupu) are before 1970 or by "older" pianists born in the early 20th century. (unless indicated without exposition repeat)

Schnabel 1937 13:54
Wührer 1950s 12:31
Erdmann 1951 (Radio Bremen, there are more recordings/broadcasts but I have only this)  12:13
Annie Fischer 1960 12:45
Horowitz (date?) 13:07 (Urania, not sure where this stems from, his late DG is 19:14 incl. the repeat which is still faster than "typical" more recent performances)
Curzon (rec date? in Decca box) 13:15
Lupu 18:15 (incl. repeat would be ca. 13:30 without)
Haskil (?) 13:41 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oqd7VG21Apw
Sofronitsky 1956 14:03 (there is another much slower one at 17:30 on youtube)
Rubinstein 14:17 (there is later slower one)

With repeat they would take ca. 17-19 min.
Nowadays almost all pianists take the repeat and they are typically around 20-22 min; the fastest "recent" one I am aware of (but there are probably many I have not checked) is Lupu and he is faster than Schnabel but considerably slower than Wührer, Fischer or Erdmann.

I pretty much think you are right. Slow interpretations seemed rare.

Haskil on my Philips LP (rec. 1951) has a stated timing of 13:06; the 13:41 one could be the 1957 recording by her.

Horowiz´s early RCA (rec. 1953) is 13:02 on my LP.

Anda (1960) is 14:39.
Also, for example, Kempff did a Decca in 1950, and Badura-Skoda one in 1960, but I don´t have the timings.

Yudina however (1947), another early recording, is 21:57.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Jo498 on August 11, 2017, 11:13:55 PM
Thanks for the info, I found the Haskil only on youtube, was not aware that there are several recordings; the early Horowitz is probably the same as on that Urania CD
The 1960s stereo by Kempff is already on the slower side >21 min, can't find the timing of the earlier Decca.
Interesting that there is at least one slow early one, namely Yudina.

As for Arrau, his fairly late (1980) Studio recording clocks at 20:07 with repeat, so while not nearly as fast as the early recordings mentioned above, it is on the fast side of the "new normal" which I find remarkable for a pianist who is often on the slow side (especially in his lateish recordings, take his 10:49 for the andante of the sonata in that recording or the slowish finale of the c minor D 958). So I think that Arrau is also (barely) a data point for the "earlier recordings/older pianists played this movement considerably faster" thesis.
Likewise, Haskil, Fischer and others mentioned above are not exactly speed demons in other repertoire. Therefore I think that this really shows a different general idea, namely that it is basically "allegro moderato", despite the uncommon "molto moderato". (Somewhat surprisingly, Schnabel who seems fast compared to most recent recordings, is actually among the slowest of the olders ones!)

Basically, the "slow" recordings of earlier times (also Serkin with 21 min or so) are roughly like the average/median (or even slightly faster than that) interpretations of the last 40 years. And while there might be some out there, I am not aware of any fastish recordings by "younger" pianists with the exception of Lupu (1994). The two "HIP" recordings I have are also slowish or (new) average respectively: Staier 21:59, Lahusen 20:38.

Ad Afanassiev: I was told that the ECM is actually an earlier recording (1985) that was only published much later. Another very slow recent one is Korstick (cpo, 25:35)

I found another fastish one, Andras Schiff's more recent on ECM at 18:33, but this is still slower than Lupu and the "older" recordings.

There is another bunch slightly faster than the typical new tempi (20-22 min with repeat) but they are usually about a minute slower than Lupu.

Horowitz (DG) 19:14
Badura-Skoda 19:24; 19:41
Todd Crow 19:24
Koroliov 19:32
Jörg Ewald Dähler (HIP) 19:09
Pollini: 18:56
Zhu Xiao Mei 19:27

no repeat:
Goode 14:04
Barenboim (Erato) 14:05
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: amw on August 13, 2017, 03:53:57 PM
Södergren 1984 is 13:16 (not 14:05 as listed on the LP sleeve)
Lefébure 1979 is 13:15
Fleisher 1956 is 13:39

Goldstone 2001 is 18:04
Hobson 2000 is 17:55

It does seem like the average performance tempo of Schubert has slowed way down recently though. 22 minutes, which is practically an adagio, seems to be exceeded by more pianists than all three of us have listed combined.

(when I personally play the movement it usually ends up in the 17:30-18:00 range with repeat and this has always felt like the "right" tempo.... of course I grew up on a steady diet of Schnabel)
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Jo498 on August 13, 2017, 09:53:00 PM
I actually think that the movement "works" at a broad range of tempo but I have not listened to Richter recently. But it is puzzling that the faster half of that range (that was the "normal" around 1960) seems to have largely disappeared with a few exceptions.

In the last days/week I heard Arrau's and Zacharias' recordings (around 20 and 20:40 respectively) and I found this tempo quite good. It is a clearly slower than a typical allegro moderato (like the "old" ones or Lupu) but still flowing.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: zamyrabyrd on August 14, 2017, 06:40:58 AM
It was a surprise to read in Interpretating Bach at the Keyboard by Badura-Skoda, that tempi in the Baroque era were considerably faster. This inference was derived from a discovery of "organ-rolls", many of them destroyed but enough remaining to upset entrenched beliefs about slower speeds.

Clara Haskil's rendering of the Bb Sonata of Schubert is one of my absolute favorites, although I grew up with Schnabel's.
Noteworthy are her trills, crafted with the precision of a violinist, which she was also.
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Mandryka on August 14, 2017, 11:45:00 PM
It was a surprise to read in Interpretating Bach at the Keyboard by Badura-Skoda, that tempi in the Baroque era were considerably faster. This inference was derived from a discovery of "organ-rolls", many of them destroyed but enough remaining to upset entrenched beliefs about slower speeds.


This must refer to musical clocks and barrel organs. Were there mechanical reproductions of Bach's music, for example? It would be nice to know more about what PBS was referring to exactly, I don't have the book.

There's some really nice things

https://www.youtube.com/v/uvGDFZN3SoA
Title: Re: Schubert's Piano Sonata D 960
Post by: Omicron9 on August 15, 2017, 08:26:29 AM
I have easily a half-dozen recordings of this piece.  I like them all for differing reasons, but the two to which I most often gravitate, other than Richter which has already been discussed, is Schiff and Pollini.

-09