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Haydn: Piano Sonatas no 23, 24, 32, etc / Hamelin

Album Summary

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 60 in C major, H 16 no 50
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Keyboard Sonata in G major, H. 16/40
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 31 in A flat major, H 16 no 46
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 55 in B flat major, H 16 no 41
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 62 in E flat major, H 16 no 52
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 38 in F major, H 16 no 23
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 35 in A flat major, H 16 no 43
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 39 in D major, H 16 no 24
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 47 in B minor, H 16 no 32
>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 50 in D major, H 16 no 37
Performer Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"Marc-Andre Hamelin has produced one of the finest Haydn sonata recordings ever made, an excellent candidate for anyone's "disc of the year" short list. The 10 sonatas included in this attractively priced set (two discs for the cost of one) span Haydn's entire career, from the 1760s to the 1790s, and every one of them in Hamelin's hands is a gem... In every piece on these two well-filled discs you'll find countless examples of impressive virtuosity allied to a keen imagination and the one critical quality by which Haydn often lives or dies: a genuine sense of humor... In sum, Hamelin gives us the total Haydn package, and Hyperion has recorded him in sonics as vivid as the interpretations. Listen, and be amazed. You'll come away wanting more." -Classics Today (10/10)

'Hamelin kicks off with the late C major sonata, H50, nailing his virtuoso credentials firmly to the mast with a mercurial account of its opening movement ... Hamelin's playing is dazzling ... These are altogether splendid performances ... These beautifully recorded performances can't be recommended too highly' (BBC Music Magazine)

'The ever-phenomenal Marc-André Hamelin breaks out into the light with a two-disc set of Haydn sonatas ... These are astonishing performances ... Hyperion's sound and presentation are, as always, immaculate' (Gramophone)

Hamelin's gift for making light of complex textures and technically taxing writing is here harnessed to music of Classical clarity and economy. It is without doubt one of his finest achievements - and that's saying something. This cleverly chosen selection of diverse character is played with masterly resourcefulness. Hamelin can do deadpan humour (the finale of no. 40) and brilliant note-spinning (No 32) like few others, but also finds a truly affecting wistfulness in some of the slow movements. Superbly recorded, this is a life-enhancing release' (Classic FM magazine)

'Marc-André Hamelin's virtuosity is in a different league altogether. The pearly evenness of his touch, his immaculate negotiation of even the trickiest of figurations and nonchalant despatch of semiquavers at the highest velocity, indulges the physical exhilaration of Haydn's playful inspiration in a way unmatched by any pianist past or present ... Even Hamelin has made few discs to equal this and none finer' (International Piano magazine)

'For those interested in Haydn (which should include everyone who cares about music) this is a particularly valuable release ... every work on this set is worthy of repeated hearings ... Hamelin is a stylish and accomplished pianist. His tone is aptly lean with no untoward use of the sustaining pedal or imposition of an undue rupturing of pulse. His runs are immaculate, even in the most rapidly articulated passages, and textures are always sharply focused ... A special virtue of this release is the inclusion of an essay by Richard Wigmore. Providing cogent information that touches a variety of issues impossible to glean from a single source, it stands, in effect, as a model of what insert notes should be and rarely are. Throughout both CDs the sound is ideal' (International Record Review)

'Hamelin's coruscating virtuosity and colouristic flair can be taken for granted. But his phenomenal technique is never an end in itself. This is playing of elegance, subtlety and a subversive Haydnesque wit. Hamelin delights in the composer's penchant for wrong-footing the listener. The madcap scherzo finale of No 50, with its outrageous pauses and deflections to the most improbable keys, is deliciously timed ... Elsewhere, Hamelin conjures a wonderful of veiled inwardness in the adagio of No 46, and an almost Chopin-like poetry in the dreamy F minor siciliano in No 23. But Hamelin's exhilarating reading has its own validity, while the finale is dazzling in its brio and comic legerdemain. This is just the sort of Haydn playing - colourful, inventive, impish - that should win these sonatas a wider following' (The Daily Telegraph)

'Marc-André Hamelin joyfully tackles ten of the later sonatas on his generously presented two-for-one release from Hyperion, and one cannot but be intoxicated by such happy piano playing' (Pianist magazine)

'Hyperion's recording is as usual excellent with a proper focus given to the piano without making it sound overtly domineering or presumptuous. Richard Wigmore's copiously detailed notes are essential reading for the discerning Haydn scholar and thus I have nothing left to add but a wholehearted recommendation for this rather excellent double CD set which incidentally is tantalizingly offered for the price of one' (Classical.net)

'It is literally true that almost every new disc by Hamelin is an adventure and a revelation-in waiting. Should anyone ask why a pianist as technically daunting and so usually given to difficult and unusual repertoire (Alkan, Ornstein, Wolpe, Busoni) is now essaying two discs of piano sonatas by good old "Papa" Haydn, all you have to do is listen to the opening C Major Piano Sonata No. 50 and you know you're a long way from music intended to be pedagogic and little else. There is extravagance here of the sort Hamelin has always fed on all through this marvelous two disc set and Hamelin's inclination toward whirlwind, occasionally almost violent prestos, Lisztian slow tempos and Bachian counterpoint brings out the bracing musical mind that so many of the greatest musicians have long insisted on beneath the classical era's Viennese paterfamilias' (The Buffalo News)

'Hamelin begins his tour with the Sonata No. 50 in C, Hob. XVI/50... The teasing opening and brusque outbursts in the opening movement are fully rendered by Hamelin, who embraces the cheeky syncopations, as well. There's something heartbreaking about Hamelin's playing in the tender Adagio to Sonata No. 46 in A flat, Hob. XVI/41. The single line, unsupported by any left-hand accompaniment rises and falls like a lullaby, gaining definition when Haydn finally brings in the left hand. There's more where that came from in the Adagio to Sonata No. 23 in F, Hob. XVI/23, which Hamelin treats as if it were a lost opera aria. Hamelin places the harmonic accents in just the right place, and he does it again and again over two discs' (Time Out Chicago)

' ... these superb performances - brisk, witty, emotionally evocative - reflect glory on him and Haydn alike ... Hamelin is equally commanding through all of the composer's moods, skipping nimbly across the keyboard with unerring precision and then turning a slow movement into a hauntingly eloquent dramatic solo. Best of all, he gets the jokes, which he brings forward without underlining them. The result is a series of buoyant renditions' (San Francisco Chronicle)

'This French-Canadian pianist is equal to anything ... Marvels of dexterity coupled with the most refined art ... The fast pieces are preturnaturally smooth, the slow ones beautifully expressive' (The Independent)

'Hamelin finds in this music what so many performers of Haydn miss - the universality of utterance, the almost Shakespearean range of emotions, hiding within the classicism of Haydn's musical language' (La Folia, USA)



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Works Details

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 60 in C major, H 16 no 50
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 15 min. 22 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: circa 1794-1795

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Keyboard Sonata in G major, H. 16/40
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1784

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 31 in A flat major, H 16 no 46
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 20 min. 26 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: circa 1767-1770

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 55 in B flat major, H 16 no 41
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 9 min. 49 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1784

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 62 in E flat major, H 16 no 52
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 19 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1794

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 38 in F major, H 16 no 23
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 16 min. 45 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1773

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 35 in A flat major, H 16 no 43
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 14 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: 1783

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 39 in D major, H 16 no 24
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 21 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: circa 1773

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 47 in B minor, H 16 no 32
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 13 min. 10 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: circa 1774-1776

>Haydn, Franz Joseph : Sonata for Keyboard no 50 in D major, H 16 no 37
  • Performer: Marc-André Hamelin (Piano)
  • Notes: Henry Wood Hall, London, England (12/13/2005-12/15/2005)
  • Running Time: 11 min. 38 sec.
  • Period Time: Classical
  • Written: by 01/31/1780