Schubert D960 piano sonata, second movement

Versions on YouTube (on modern piano unless stated):

  • Claudio Arrau — Some of the timings are a little eccentric, as you might expect from Arrau.
  • Paul Badura-Skoda
  • Seymour Bernstein
  • Lazar Berman
  • Evgeni Bozhanov
  • Alfred Brendel — Great except that his middle section is a bit too aggressive for my taste. The final C# major sounds desolate rather than compassionate like Kempff's does. Key transitions very nicely done.
  • Clifford Curzon
  • Alicia De Larrocha
  • Eduard Erdmann — Climaxes way too jarring.
  • Myra Hess
  • Wilhelm Kempff — My favourite version. Has just the right amount of contemplativeness without being maudling. He manages to make the ending sound positive, while Brendel has a quite different interpretation.
  • Zoltan Kocsis — very shallow, and the middle section sounds out of place
  • Florian Krumpöck — Too slow — again, I prefer a walking sort of pace for the first and last sections. Otherwise it doesn't sound contemplative enough.
  • Eunice Norton — In my opinion, the first and last sections need to have a degree of smoothness for an appropriate level of contemplativeness. This is lost with the jerky emotiveness of this interpretation.
  • Maurizio Pollini — The first and last sections are very bland. In their stiffness, they sound emotionless rather than desolate or depressive. The final modulation sounds completely and utterly boring and unremarkable as a result! Middle section is good, though.
  • Sviatoslav Richter
  • Artur Rubinstein
  • Artur Schnabel — poor recording quality. But from what I can tell, he's going for a more 'desolate' interpretation a la Brendel and Hough.
  • Vladimir Sofronitsky — Too melodramatic for my taste.
  • Friedrich Wührer — Sounds more like Brahms than Schubert. Not contemplative enough.
  • Nikolaus Lahusen, fortepiano
  • Andreas Staier, fortepiano