Saturday, November 21

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Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) – 11 Bagatelles, Op. 119

Steven Lebetkin (1955- ) – 11 Bagatelles

L. van Beethoven – Piano Sonata No. 26, Op. 81a, Les Adieux (“The Farewell”)
Das Lebewohl — Les adieux (“The Farewell”): Adagio
Die Abwesenheit — L’absence (“The Absence”): Andante espressivo
Das Wiedersehn — Le retour (“Meeting Again”): Vivacissimamente — Poco andante — Tempo I


Ludwig van Beethoven – Bagatelles, Op. 119
0:59 – No. 1 Allegretto
3:17 – No. 2 Andante con moto
4:21 – No. 3 à l’Allemande
6:17 – No. 4 Andante Cantabile
7:43 – No. 5 Risoluto
8:49 – No. 6 Andante
10:29 – No. 7 Allegro, ma non troppo
11:33 – No. 8 Moderato cantabile
12:54 – No. 9 Vivace moderato
13:27 – No. 10 Allegramente
13:54 – No. 11 Andante, ma non troppo

Steven Lebetkin – 11 Bagatelles for Solo Piano (2017)*
15:39 – No. 1 Expressive and not too slow
17:29 – No. 2 Allegro
18:53 – No. 3 ♩ = 40
20:00 – No. 4 ♩ = 60
21:12 – No. 5 Andante
22:24 – No. 6 Lento
24:03 – No. 7 Leo Kraft – In Memoriam
25:18 – No. 8 Lento
27:20 – No. 9 Lento
29:32 – No. 10 ♩. = 90
30:24 – No. 11 Moderato. Alberto Ginastera – In Memoriam

L. van Beethoven – Piano Sonata No. 26, Op. 81a
32:58 – I. Das Lebewohl (The Farewell)
39:20 – II. Die Abwesenheit (The Absence)
42:37 – III. Die Wiedersehen (The Return)

*World-premiere performance

A special note about this world-premiere performance from the composer, Steven Lebetkin:
I am honored today by the first public performance of my Eleven Bagatelles for Piano by Daniel Vnukowski.

These Bagatelles were both newly composed in 2017 and joined with other works composed during my early teenage years. The group came shortly after the successful premiere of my Violin Concerto at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Beethoven and Mozart when young boys both studied composition with Joseph Haydn, the inventor of modern compositional technique as we know it today. Their early works are often indistinguishable from Haydn’s late works. Yet both grew to expand composition technique in quite different way. In the case of Beethoven, he explored the adoption of speech and emotive expression, similar in some ways to the manner that an actor would perform a monologue onstage. There are short ideas, fits and starts, pauses, silences, all weaved together in a cohesive experience that together, feel as if the music is speaking, and along an inevitable path from beginning to end.

Beethoven’s unique compositional technique expands upon the work of Haydn yet goes much further, later with Chopin in his short piano preludes, then Brahms, Stravinsky, Bartok and Britten.
These Bagatelles, like my other late works, also rely upon the compositional speech technique of Beethoven, and of course Chopin in his preludes, and later on Bartok. Each are short, intimate, speech-like, unfold in an inevitable path, and intended to touch the human soul in eleven different ways.

I hope they touch yours.

Steve Lebetkin, Composer Biography

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