Schuncke: Piano Music

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Composer: Ludwig Schuncke
Artists: Tatiana Larionova
Born the same year as Robert Schumann, 1810, Ludwig Schuncke died at the tender age of 24 from tuberculosis. Thus was cruelly abbreviated the life of a pianist and composer who, had he lived on, might well have attained more of the fame accorded to Schumann himself. The two men met at a Leipzig drinking establishment in December 1833 and quickly became firm friends. Up to that point Schunke had pursued the career of a prodigal musician, including studies in Paris with Anton Reicha, even a brief meeting with Chopin.

The influence of Chopin can be heard in the reflective introduction to Schunke’s Grand Sonata, which is the largest piece in this valuable collection of his piano music, which will captivate anyone with an ear or interest for the stirrings of the 19th-century Romantic tradition of piano music. Schuncke dedicated the Sonata to Schumann, who returned the compliment with his Toccata Op.7: some indication of the mutual respect between the two men but also Schuncke’s capability as a performer. The Sonata’s brief but stormy Scherzo leaps through torrents of passagework, and the following Andante owes more to the songful German tradition than Chopin’s brand of melancholy.


00:00:00 Ludwig Schuncke: Piano Sonata in G Minor, Op. 3: I. Allegro
00:06:59 Ludwig Schuncke: Piano Sonata in G Minor, Op. 3: II. Scherzo. Molto allegro
00:09:51 Ludwig Schuncke: Piano Sonata in G Minor, Op. 3: III. Andante sostenuto
00:15:12 Ludwig Schuncke: Piano Sonata in G Minor, Op. 3: IV. Finale. Allegro
00:23:10 Ludwig Schuncke: Divertissement brillant sur des motifs allemands in B-Flat Major, Op. 12
00:34:38 Ludwig Schuncke: Caprice No. 1 in C Major, Op. 9
00:40:36 Ludwig Schuncke: Caprice No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 10
00:49:13 Ludwig Schuncke: Rondeau brillant in E-Flat Major, Op. 11
00:57:19 Ludwig Schuncke: Rondeau in D Major, Op. 15
01:02:32 Ludwig Schuncke: Air suisse varié

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