Joseph Haydn, Piano Works
Reinhard Becker, Piano
The present recording is the result of a long commitment to the piano works of Joseph Haydn. Reinhard Becker undertook his first all-Haydn program as early as 1986.
The compilation of this CD contains not only the mature composer's undisputed masterpieces, the Sonatas in C major Hob. XVI/50 and in Eb major Hob. XVI/49, but also the Sonata in C minor Hob. XVI/20, which marks Haydn's breakthrough from the still galant to the sensitive style at the age of 40 years. Next to its distinctively personal expression, the Sonata in Eb minor is formally reminiscent of baroque suite movements.
The Adagio in G major and the Sonata in D major Hob. SVI/51, with their anticipation of the writing styles of Schubert, Beethoven, and at times Brahms, show the enormous geographical tension of Haydn's music.
Reinhard Becker: A biography
Pianist Reinhard Becker received his first musical education from Heidi Bader-Benmesaoud (piano) and Wolfgang Gönnenwein (theory) at Michelbach/Bilz, a boarding school then very much musically oriented. He was professionally trained by Hans Kann (Vienna) and Naoyuki Taneda (Karlsruhe). Studies with Hans Leygraf (Salzburg) and Günter Reinhold (Karlsruhe) complemented this foundation.
Since 1981, Becker has taught a piano class at the University of Music Trossingen. From this class, numerous piano educators and pianists have emerged, among them many top prize winners in international competitions (Busoni, Gina Bachauer-Salt Lake City, WPC London, Bellini and others).
He has undertaken concert tours to Brazil, Finland, Georgia, Greece, Italy, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Switzerland, Singapore, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, the United States and Yugoslavia. Becker's repertoire focuses on Haydn, Beethoven, Schumann, Liszt and Debussy, to each of whom he dedicated special programmes.
In addition to constantly expanding his standard repertoire, he takes a particular interest in recent developments in piano composition. Reinhard Becker has recorded for radio, television, and on CD. His earliest recordings were of works by Johann Sebastian Bach for television.