Beethoven's Cello: Five Revolutionary Sonatas and Their World

Marc D. Moskovitz and R. Larry Todd
Boydell Press
2018

In 1796 the young Beethoven presented his first two cello sonatas at the court of Frederick William II, an avid cellist and the reigning Prussian monarch. Released in print the next year, these revolutionary sonatas forever altered the cello repertoire by fundamentally redefining the relationship between the cello and the piano and promoting their parity. Beethoven continued to develop the potential of the duo partnership in his three other cello sonatas – the lyrical and heroic Op. 69 and the two experimental sonatas Op. 102, No. 1 and No. 2, transcendent compositions conceived on the threshold of the composer's late style.

Todd and his co-author examine these seminal cornerstones of the cello repertoire and place them within their historical and cultural context. The book features a preface by renowned cellist Steven Isserlis and concludes with translated reviews of the composer's cello music published during his lifetime.

Beethoven's Cello: Five Revolutionary Sonatas and Their World