Jan Ladislav Dussek : Piano Concerto in B flat major Op.22.
Andreas Staier Fortepiano
Here is a composer whose works I have never heard before. Dussek (February 12, 1760 – March 20, 1812) was a Czech virtusoso pianist and composer whose works although were written in the Classical period have romantic elements.
Here’s some excerpts from the Wikipedia entry on Dussek:
The vast majority of Dussek’s music involves the piano or harp in some way. He wrote 35 sonatas for piano and 11 for piano duet, as well as numerous other works for both configurations. His chamber music output includes 65 violin sonatas, 24 piano (or harp) trios, and a variety of works for harp, harp or piano, or harp and piano. Some sonatas had trio parts added by J. B. Cramer. Orchestral works were limited to concertos, including 16 for piano (one of them had lost and two of them are remained dubious attribution), six for harp (three of them lost), and one for two pianos. He wrote a modest number of vocal works, include 12 songs, a cantata, a mass, and one opera, The Captive of Spilberg. His compositions also included arrangements of other works, especially opera overtures, for piano.
Dussek was a predecessor of the Romantic composers for piano, especially Chopin, Schumann and Mendelssohn. Many of his works are strikingly at odds with the prevailing late Classical style of other composers of the time. However, despite his departure from the mainstream idiom of contemporaries like Haydn and Mozart, Dussek’s stylistic influence over later composers was limited since his works remained highly obscure and largely unknown outside England. The evolution of style found in Dussek’s piano writing suggests he pursued an independent line of development, one that anticipated but did not influence early Romanticism.
Along with Clementi, Dussek may have been a source of stylistic inspiration and influence for Beethoven, whose expansion upon the idiomatic innovations of the London school led to their rapid penumbration with the appearance of Beethoven’s own keyboard works. Stylistic, melodic, dynamic and even structural similarities have been observed, for instance, between Beethoven’s Sonata Opus 10, No. 3 and Dussek’s Sonatas Opus 31, No. 2 and Opus 35, No. 2. Similarly, the opening of Beethoven’s Sonata Opus 10, No. 1 quotes directly Dussek’s Sonata Opus 39, No. 3 (see image).
It is also possible that Dussek’s influence can be seen in Beethoven’s famous Sonata Opus 81a, les Adieux: “both the program and the realization owed a great deal to Dussek’s The Farewell, Opus 44.
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