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Piano Sonata No.9 in E Major Op.14 No.1

Beethoven (1770-1827)

Piano Sonata No.9 in E Minor Op.14 No.1

The two sonatas published in Vienna by Mollo in December 1799 as Op.14 and dedicated to Baroness Josefine von Braun probably date from 1798. The E major Sonata begins with an Allegro whose main theme is based on a pattern of ascending fourths, above a repeated bass; the gentle second subject curves downwards and upwards in outline. The "development" is here more an episode, based on an entirely new theme in octaves. The changes in layout at the recapitulation (with scales instead of repeated chords in the bass) are worthy of note.

The second movement is a somewhat melancholy Allegretto in e minor and a lilting dotted rhythm, enclosing a "trio" in D Major. The finale is a gay rondo. Whose refrain is presented in octaves above an accompaniment in broken-chord triplets, and in which there is some particularly happy use of scale flourishes. There is an episode in G major, in the triplet figuration of the refrainís accompaniment.

Robin Golding

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