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Franz Schubert - Sonata in F sharp minor, D. 571

Music > Piano Music > Piano Sonatas

The year 1817 was one that found Schubert experimenting with the piano sonata: of the eight such works he began at this time, only four came to fruition. The Allegro in F sharp minor, D. 571 was clearly intended as the opening movement of a sonata, and it is possible that two other isolated pieces written in the summer of 1817, were originally part of the same design. The Allegro in F sharp minor is certainly the finest of the three, and it has an opening of remarkable beauty.

The gently flowing accompaniment is set in motion before the melancholy main theme appears. Schubert's purpose is not simply to soften the eventual entry of the theme, but rather to give prominence to the arpeggio figure that provides the movement's main unifying thread. His manuscript breaks off at what is presumably the end of the development section, leaving the music poised on the brink of B minor.

Piano Sonata in F sharp minor, D. 571 (Fragment)

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