Paul Lewis’ Solid Schubert Program

This is a massive collection. Paul Lewis traverses the late piano sonatas of Franz Schubert. Each one is an epic odyssey. And each one is a challenge to the performer. 

Schubert’s imagination ran unfettered in these works. The sonatas run between 30-40 minutes in length. There’s an internal logic for each of these sonatas. But it’s not as clear-cut as in, say, a Mozart sonata. Or even a Beethoven sonata. 

And that’s where Paul Lewis shines. He seems to understand the underlying structure of these works. 

So we don’t get a transition from one pretty section to another. Rather, there’s a purpose to these performances. And there’s a strong sense of direction. 

Lewis’ technique has a wide range. He can play with fragile delicacy, delivering a simple melody with all its charm. And he can play cascading chords with power, intensifying the emotion of the passages.  

Also included are some of Schubert’s other late piano works. The “Wanderer” Fantasie, D. 760 and Moments Musicaux, D. 780 are two examples. Lewis delivers superb readings of these works as well.  

I have to admit I wasn’t completely taken by the piano’s recorded sound at first. It seems a little dark to me. But I soon warmed to it. Lewis’ playing completely won me over. 

Highly recommended.

Paul Lewis Plays Schubert
Harmonia Mundi HMX 2904091.96
6 CD Set

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