David Geringas / Ian Fountain

Ludwig van Beethoven: Sämtliche Werke für Violoncello und Klavier

(CD - Haenssler #93272)

Review by

Recordings of Beethoven's complete works for cello and piano abound, but few of them really contain everything the composer penned for one of his most important instrumental combinations. Often overlooked is Beethoven's own transcription of the Op. 17 Horn Sonata in F major and the Op. 64 Duo Sonata in E flat, a reworking the composer made of his own Op. 3 String Trio. These sonatas were not written at pivotal moments in Beethoven's development like the other cello sonatas, but still represent a depiction of the fondness both the composer and his patrons had for the cello. Adding to these are the five original sonatas and three variation sets, making for an impressive body of literature considering no one before Beethoven was writing for cello and piano. Performing the true complete works on this Hänssler Classic three-disc set is cellist David Geringas and pianist Ian Fountain. Geringas has been tasked with editing the most recent urtext edition of the complete sonatas, so it's no surprise that his performances feature a refreshing, admirable adherence to the score. Beethoven's writing is clear and detailed, so there's plenty to go on; Geringas picks up on all of the nuances of phrasing, dynamics, and articulation and produces performances of wonderful detail and simplicity. Fountain's playing is equally pure, with crystalline articulation, limited use of the pedal, and careful balance with the cello. Listeners who are truly after a complete recording of these works will not be disappointed by this set.

Track Listing - Disc 3

Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
Duo Sonata for piano & cello in E flat major, Op. 64
1 10:46
2 07:58
3 03:57
4 09:22
5 03:29
6 06:41
Twelve Variations on a Theme from Handel's Judas Maccabaeus for piano & cello in G major, WoO 45
7 00:43
8 00:36
9 00:39
10 00:38
11 00:45
12 00:54
13 00:39
14 00:36
15 00:42
16 00:52
17 00:43
18 03:14
19 01:02
Seven Variations for piano & cello in E flat major, WoO 46
20 00:44
21 00:39
22 00:41
23 00:49
24 01:16
25 00:35
26 02:17
27 01:50
Twelve Variations for piano & cello in F major, Op. 66
28 00:30
29 00:32
30 00:29
31 00:29
32 00:39
33 00:31
34 00:26
35 00:41
36 00:27
37 00:33
38 01:18
39 00:58
40 01:48
blue highlight denotes track pick