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Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube #2901903
10/19/19 02:13 AM
10/19/19 02:13 AM
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 81
Orange County, CA
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BeeZee4 Offline OP
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Levit's traversal of the entire cycle is now available on YouTube. I found it to be a convincing cycle, satisfying to me. Many of the caveats are the fast tempi he takes in the outer movements of the early and middle sonatas. Igor channeled some of Schnabel here (who took very fast tempos) as well as Friedrich Gulda. Actually Richard Goode is faster than Levit in many instances. In any case, the fast tempos were not that disconcerting to me. Some of the wit and humor was swept away in Op. 54 and Op. 79. And the Allegretto of the "Waldstein" should have been more expansive, but that coda was thrilling. And the opening statement of the "Waldstein" was propulsive, full of energy and life. The Presto Agitato of the "Moonlight" was very edgy due to the heightened tempos, same as the finale of the "Appassionata". Levit's playing is exemplary, his technical facility never lacking.

Where he really shines is in the slow movements. The "Largo e Mesto " of Opus 10, #3 is sublime, as is the "Hammerclavier" Adagio. His reading of Opus 22 (rarely performed) is beautifully voiced, with judicious use of the sustain and une corda pedal
The tonal gradations and operatic character of the leading voice are marvelous!
Levit plays Adagio of Op. 22 Beethoven
On the whole, Levit journeys through the cycle very persuasively. The early period sonatas are very Haydynesque, finishing with the final rondo of Op. 22 with a Mozartean lilt. The middle period shows Beethoven breaking apart the sonata form with the Opus 26 "Marche Funebre" and the two Sonatas "Quasi una Fantasia". Levit's tonal palette and sound spectrum continues to grow, culminating in the late sonatas of Op. 81a, Op. 90 and the final five.These last are from Levit's previous release and they continue to amaze in the unique sound world of Beethoven,

Again, many will take issue with some of the fast tempos, but keep in mind the precedent of Schnabel. As an example, Leviit's timing of the "Appassionata" runs 9.23/5.58/7.58. Schnabel times in at 9.00/6.00/7.12.

All in all, a solid cycle in my opinion. Levit communicates Beethoven successfully, as well as being completely immersed and confident in his views. He takes his risks, just as Schiff is idiosyncratic in some of his interpretations, so is Igor.

Last edited by BeeZee4; 10/19/19 02:22 AM. Reason: Insert link

Estonia 190 #6209
Working on:
Bach's Goldbergs
Ravel: Une Barque sur l'Ocean
Rachmaninoff: Etude Tableaux Op. 39 No. 5 Eb minor
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Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2901905
10/19/19 02:39 AM
10/19/19 02:39 AM
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 81
Orange County, CA
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BeeZee4 Offline OP
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Here's the entire link on YouTube, courtesy of Sony Classics:

Igor Levit Beethoven Sonata Cycle

Last edited by BeeZee4; 10/19/19 02:40 AM. Reason: typo

Estonia 190 #6209
Working on:
Bach's Goldbergs
Ravel: Une Barque sur l'Ocean
Rachmaninoff: Etude Tableaux Op. 39 No. 5 Eb minor
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902112
10/19/19 03:40 PM
10/19/19 03:40 PM
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BBC Radio 3 reviewed the set this morning:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0009k69 (from 1:50 - N.B. may not be available where you live)

The gist of the review was that tempi tend to be fast, and the playing confident & brilliant. The earlier sonatas came off best, but there's a lack of 'vulnerability' and 'sense of discovery' overall.


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: bennevis] #2902117
10/19/19 03:56 PM
10/19/19 03:56 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,954
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
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Originally Posted by bennevis
tempi tend to be fast,

Wim Winters isn't going to be happy! 🤣

I listened to Nos. 23 & 29 today. Beautifully done.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2902172
10/19/19 08:12 PM
10/19/19 08:12 PM
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 3,172
In the Ozarks of Missouri
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In the Ozarks of Missouri
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by bennevis
tempi tend to be fast,

Wim Winters isn't going to be happy! 🤣

I listened to Nos. 23 & 29 today. Beautifully done.


No, he won't be happy, lol...


[Linked Image]
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902174
10/19/19 08:39 PM
10/19/19 08:39 PM
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 81
Orange County, CA
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BeeZee4 Offline OP
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Orange County, CA
Gramophone just reviewed it this month:
Gramaphone Review of Igor Levit's Beethoven Cycle

" . . .there's that sense of being one with Beethoven himself". Calling it "a magnificent achievement."


Estonia 190 #6209
Working on:
Bach's Goldbergs
Ravel: Une Barque sur l'Ocean
Rachmaninoff: Etude Tableaux Op. 39 No. 5 Eb minor
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902191
10/19/19 10:57 PM
10/19/19 10:57 PM
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,030
Santa Fe, NM
AaronSF Offline
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The entire Igor Levit Beethoven sonata cycle is available on Spotify also, for those of you who are Spotify subscribers.


August Förster 215
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: AaronSF] #2902212
10/20/19 04:35 AM
10/20/19 04:35 AM
Joined: Feb 2019
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New York City
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LarryK Online content
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Originally Posted by AaronSF
The entire Igor Levit Beethoven sonata cycle is available on Spotify also, for those of you who are Spotify subscribers.


And also on Tidal and Qobuz for those who stream CD quality or higher to their stereos.


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902365
10/20/19 01:24 PM
10/20/19 01:24 PM
Joined: Jul 2017
Posts: 347
Salish Sea
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Igor Levit's Beethoven cycle is also available on Amazon Prime Unlimited. There's my Sunday listening for a while...


”Mister Upright,” Yamaha YUS5.
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: LarryK] #2902372
10/20/19 01:31 PM
10/20/19 01:31 PM
Joined: May 2001
Posts: 23,128
Victoria, BC
BruceD Offline
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Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by AaronSF
The entire Igor Levit Beethoven sonata cycle is available on Spotify also, for those of you who are Spotify subscribers.


And also on Tidal and Qobuz for those who stream CD quality or higher to their stereos.


... and also on IDAGIO.

Regards,


BruceD
- - - - -
Estonia 190
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BruceD] #2902412
10/20/19 02:44 PM
10/20/19 02:44 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 1,367
New York City
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LarryK Online content
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New York City
Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by AaronSF
The entire Igor Levit Beethoven sonata cycle is available on Spotify also, for those of you who are Spotify subscribers.


And also on Tidal and Qobuz for those who stream CD quality or higher to their stereos.


... and also on IDAGIO.

Regards,


Maybe they’ll integrate IDAGIO with Roon. That would be nice. Some people are calling for it.


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: LarryK] #2902425
10/20/19 03:18 PM
10/20/19 03:18 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,954
Tyrone Slothrop Online content
Tyrone Slothrop  Online Content

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Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 7,954
Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by AaronSF
The entire Igor Levit Beethoven sonata cycle is available on Spotify also, for those of you who are Spotify subscribers.
And also on Tidal and Qobuz for those who stream CD quality or higher to their stereos.
... and also on IDAGIO.
Maybe they’ll integrate IDAGIO with Roon. That would be nice. Some people are calling for it.

Idagio and Roon can be connected via a Sonos Connect.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902431
10/20/19 03:35 PM
10/20/19 03:35 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 1,367
New York City
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LarryK Online content
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LarryK  Online Content
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Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 1,367
New York City
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
Originally Posted by LarryK
Originally Posted by BruceD
Originally Posted by LarryK
And also on Tidal and Qobuz for those who stream CD quality or higher to their stereos.
... and also on IDAGIO.
Maybe they’ll integrate IDAGIO with Roon. That would be nice. Some people are calling for it.

Idagio and Roon can be connected via a Sonos Connect.


I’m all set in the amp department, LOL. I have an amp that I can’t lift and it doubles as a room heater, but, oh, it puts out smooth Class A sound. I’m back to 175w Class A operation now that the weather has turned cooler.

I could stream IDAGIO from my Mac Mini through a web browser with the screen broadcast to my iPad with the Luna display dongle but it is nice to have everything integrated under Roon, as Tidal and Qobuz are for me now. I used to stream Naxos through a web browser but it was kind of a pain and I dropped it.


Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902439
10/20/19 03:54 PM
10/20/19 03:54 PM
Joined: Feb 2019
Posts: 1,367
New York City
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LarryK Online content
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Joined: Feb 2019
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New York City
Actually, I made a mistake. The amp puts out 160Wpc, Class A, into 8ohms. It weighs 176lbs. I’ve lost a little weight recently and now realize that the amp and I are the same weight.

Last edited by LarryK; 10/20/19 03:55 PM.

Yamaha U1 Silent Piano
Re: Igor Levit Beethoven Cycle now posted on YouTube [Re: BeeZee4] #2902539
10/20/19 09:03 PM
10/20/19 09:03 PM
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Posts: 5,814
McAllen, TX
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Brendan Offline
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I've been making my way through this cycle recently and am enjoying it immensely. The tempi are generally on the virtuoso side, but I think it overall fits the character of Beethoven's style. The early sonatas are particularly successful, and everyone will argue over the details in the later ones, but I think it's a great achievement that stands up to Richard Goode, aka the last best version of the cycle.


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