Ignacy Jan Paderewski's Sonata in E-Flat Minor, Op. 21: Insights into his compositional technique and performance style.
Description: The recordings of the legendary pianist Ignacy Jan Paderewski are a valuable documentation of his piano performance style. Knowledge of late-Romantic performance practices gleaned from Paderewski's recordings suggest ways of approaching the performance of his Sonata in E-Flat Minor, Op. 21. This Sonata, composed in 1903 near the end of his compositional career, is a work of the highest caliber, deserving a permanent place in the concert pianist's repertoire. The purpose of this paper is to provide performance suggestions based on Paderewski's performance style which will produce a performance closer to the spirit of the times in which it was written. This study provides an overview of the project in Chapter 1, and a background of Paderewski's life as pianist, composer, and statesman in Chapter 2. A time-line chart of his complete works is included for reference. Chapter 3 analyzes Sonata, Op. 21 in regards to form, sound, melody, harmony, and rhythm. Following the analysis, the Sonata is compared compositionally to sonatas that appear alongside Sonata, Op. 21 on Paderewski's programs, including those by Chopin, Beethoven, and Liszt. Graphs summarize the form and dynamic density of the Sonata, and examples illustrate Paderewski's craft at thematic transformation. Chapter 4 examines Paderewski's performance style documented in recordings of his own compositions and of works by Chopin, Schumann, Liszt, and Beethoven. Consideration is given to various aspects of interpretation, including counterpoint, asynchrony, tempo rubato, rhythmic variance, and pedaling. Each of these aspects of Paderewski's performance style is illustrated with transcriptions of excerpts from Paderewski's recordings. The author proposes examples of application of these aspects to Paderewski's Sonata, Op. 21. Chapter 5 provides a summary of the project. Appendix A contains an analysis of the rhythmic grouping that performers may find useful, and Appendix B contains the recital programs required for the degree program.
Date: May 2003
Creator: Nelson, Anne Marie
Partner: UNT Libraries