Schubert: Piano Sonata in G, D894; Piano Sonata in C, D613/612; Piano Sonata in E flat, D568; Piano Sonata in A, D664; Piano Sonata in F minor, D625/505; Piano Sonata in B flat, D960

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Schubert
LABELS: Nimbus
WORKS: Piano Sonata in G, D894; Piano Sonata in C, D613/612; Piano Sonata in E flat, D568; Piano Sonata in A, D664; Piano Sonata in F minor, D625/505; Piano Sonata in B flat, D960
PERFORMER: Marta Deyanova (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: NI 1779 DDD
Deyanova is a pianist with a mind of her own, and she doesn’t jib at imposing her own powerful personality on this random selection of Schubert’s sonatas. There are two ways of doing this, of course – the one that works and the one that doesn’t – and Deyanova’s mostly does. Her playing has a ringing authority which has been likened to Richter, and her combined sense of musical structure and tonal shading enables her to pull off the near miracle of sustaining interest throughout the half-hour opening movement of the monumental G major Sonata, D894.

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It’s good to have two of the unfinished sonatas on these discs, and pleasing that Deyanova chooses not to use one of the several completed editions but to break off undramatically at the point where Schubert wrote his final notes.

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The one disappointment is the glorious B flat Sonata, D960. After an uncharacteristically pedestrian first movement Deyanova plays the Andante too fast and the Scherzo too slowly, robbing the one of its depth and the other of its sparkle. For my taste, Clifford Curzon’s tempi (Decca) are spot on, and he finds a sublimity which sadly eludes Deyanova. Nevertheless, the present set is a fine achievement. Wadham Sutton