Ludwig van Beethoven
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No.3, op.37
Facsimile Edition of the Autograph Score, Preußische Staatsbibliothek, Berlin (ms. autogr. Beethoven 14)
Commentary by Elisabeth Schmierer and introductory note by Mitsuko Uchida
piano introduction, 1st movement
Meisterwerke der Musik im Faksimile, 45.
Laaber, 2018. Oblong, 32 x 24 cm, xxiv, 240 pp.
Facsimile, in full-color, of the autograph manuscript preserved in the State Library, Berlin. The piece was composed in 1799-1800 and first performed—Beethoven playing from short score—April 5, 1803. Scholars have pointed out that Mozart's
C Minor Concerto K.491, which Beethoven
played in public concerts, bore an influence on Beethoven's Concerto. The first movement cadenza (not included in this source) is available in a separate facsimile edition: The Complete Cadenzas, ed. Willy Hess. Hardbound. $558
Beethoven's Concerto in C Minor was dedicated to Prince Louis Ferdinand from Prussia, House of Hohenzollern (1772-1806). What exactly was Beethoven's connection to this man, a nephew of Frederick the Great? Well, according to James Hamilton-Patterson, Prince Louis was an authentic military hero, a compulsive spendthrift, but also had a fascinating other side, being a gifted musician, composer, and excellent pianist (he studied under Dussek), with the ability to freely improvise at the piano. Beethoven met him during a visit to Berlin in 1796 and the two became friends and kindred spirits. Might the improvisational-like entrance of the piano in the first movement be Beethoven's expression of gratitude to his friend?—we'll never know.
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