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Paul Lewis — “Joseph Haydn: Piano Sonatas Vol. 2” (Harmonia Mundi, 2021)

Abstract:

Every project is a profound exploration, a journey that delves into the depths of a composer’s soul. My latest album, “Joseph Haydn: Piano Sonatas Vol. 2,” recently released on the Harmonia Mundi label, is a continuation of my ongoing exploration of the masterful compositions of Joseph Haydn. As a pianist, immersing myself in the intricate world of Haydn’s piano sonatas has been both a challenge and a source of immense artistic fulfillment.

The second volume of the Joseph Haydn series comprises four remarkable sonatas: Hob:XVI No. 20 in C minor, No. 34 in E minor, No. 51 in D major, and No. 52 in E-flat major. Each of these sonatas carries the distinct Haydn touch – a perfect blend of musical brilliance, structural innovation, and emotional depth. In this album, I sought to capture the essence of Haydn’s genius, presenting his works with the sensitivity and interpretation they deserve.

My journey with Haydn has been a captivating one, marked by a meticulous exploration of his compositions, seeking to unravel the layers of emotion embedded within each note. Haydn’s sonatas, often overshadowed by the monumental works of his contemporaries, possess a unique charm and complexity that demand careful attention. Through this album, I aimed to shed light on the depth and sophistication of Haydn’s piano music, inviting listeners to join me on a musical voyage through time.

In conclusion, my artistic endeavors in the realm of classical music are driven by a deep-seated passion for exploration and discovery. From the nuanced world of Haydn’s piano sonatas to the emotional turbulence of Schubert’s compositions, each project is a testament to the transformative power of music. As I look ahead, my commitment to sharing these musical experiences with audiences around the world remains unwavering. The upcoming performances of Schubert’s sonatas, the innovative pairing of Copland and Gershwin, and the release of the second volume of Haydn’s sonatas are all milestones in this ongoing journey – a journey fueled by the timeless and boundless spirit of classical music.

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ISSN: 2792-8349

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International Journal of Music

Every project is a profound exploration, a journey that delves into the depths of a composer’s soul. My latest album, “Joseph Haydn: Piano Sonatas Vol. 2,” recently released on the Harmonia Mundi label, is a continuation of my ongoing exploration of the masterful compositions of Joseph Haydn. As a pianist, immersing myself in the intricate world of Haydn’s piano sonatas has been both a challenge and a source of immense artistic fulfillment.

The second volume of the Joseph Haydn series comprises four remarkable sonatas: Hob:XVI No. 20 in C minor, No. 34 in E minor, No. 51 in D major, and No. 52 in E-flat major. Each of these sonatas carries the distinct Haydn touch – a perfect blend of musical brilliance, structural innovation, and emotional depth. In this album, I sought to capture the essence of Haydn’s genius, presenting his works with the sensitivity and interpretation they deserve.

My journey with Haydn has been a captivating one, marked by a meticulous exploration of his compositions, seeking to unravel the layers of emotion embedded within each note. Haydn’s sonatas, often overshadowed by the monumental works of his contemporaries, possess a unique charm and complexity that demand careful attention. Through this album, I aimed to shed light on the depth and sophistication of Haydn’s piano music, inviting listeners to join me on a musical voyage through time.

As I reflect on my current and upcoming projects, the Schubert sonata project stands out as a monumental undertaking. Performing all of Schubert’s completed sonatas, along with the incomplete “Reliquie” (D.840), presents a unique challenge and opportunity. This ambitious project spans the 2022-2023 and 2023-2024 seasons, allowing me the time to delve deep into Schubert’s world. The emotional turbulence in Schubert’s music is palpable, and immersing myself in his sonatas is a journey that involves both peaks of wonder and moments where I contemplate walking away. This endeavor will culminate in a final concert series, featuring the last three Schubert sonatas in one program – a performance that promises to be the most impactful in terms of both length and emotional substance.

The realization of this project extends beyond geographical boundaries, as I plan to bring these cycles to audiences worldwide. Performances are scheduled in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia, underscoring the universality and timeless appeal of Schubert’s music. This global exploration of Schubert’s sonatas is a testament to the power of classical music to transcend cultural barriers and connect with audiences on a profound level.

During the lockdown period, I seized the opportunity to acquaint myself with Aaron Copland’s Concerto for Piano and Orchestra, a piece not frequently performed. Dating back to 1925, this concerto carries the influence of jazz, making it an engaging and enjoyable piece to play. An intriguing idea dawned upon me – why not pair it with George Gershwin’s iconic “Rhapsody in Blue,” composed in 1924? Both American concertos, written in the same era and influenced by jazz, offer a fascinating juxtaposition of styles. Several orchestras have already expressed interest in scheduling this program, and I am genuinely excited about the prospect of bringing this unique musical experience to audiences.

In addition to these projects, the release of the second volume of my Joseph Haydn — Piano Sonatas album is on the horizon, set to grace the music scene in September. The selected sonatas on this CD showcase the diversity of Haydn’s compositional style, from the introspective Hob:XVI No. 20 in C minor to the exuberant No. 51 in D major. With this album, I aim to continue the dialogue with Haydn’s legacy, inviting listeners to embark on a sonic journey through the intricacies of his piano sonatas.

Conclusion

In conclusion, my artistic endeavors in the realm of classical music are driven by a deep-seated passion for exploration and discovery. From the nuanced world of Haydn’s piano sonatas to the emotional turbulence of Schubert’s compositions, each project is a testament to the transformative power of music. As I look ahead, my commitment to sharing these musical experiences with audiences around the world remains unwavering. The upcoming performances of Schubert’s sonatas, the innovative pairing of Copland and Gershwin, and the release of the second volume of Haydn’s sonatas are all milestones in this ongoing journey – a journey fueled by the timeless and boundless spirit of classical music.

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