In his collections of Improvvisi, Franz Schubert impressively showed at the end of his life how a lyrical, song-like form could be rendered on the piano.
Despite their simplicity, the Opus 142 improvises prove to be genuine works of art and are considered to be among the most beloved pieces of romantic piano music.
Sibelius wrote his piano music at a time when the composer could earn extra money by writing ‘salon pieces’ for the piano. Sound recording was still in its infancy, so many people learned to play the piano for fun. Sibelius’ piano music is well written and very musical. Grandiose and solemn, this piece is characteristic of Sibelius’ style, portraying the wintry stillness of the Nordic landscape.
The improvisations are among Chopin’s most fascinating works: they are rather expansive, somewhat longer than the nocturnes and shorter than the ballades and scherzos.
These works fascinate us with their lightness and poetic mood, their unparalleled subtlety and the ‘delicacy of line’ with which these ‘musical landscapes’ are drawn.
Franz Schubert: Impromptus op. 142, D. 935
Jean Sibelius: 6 Impromptus, Op. 5
– Impromptu I, Op. 5, No. 1
– Impromptu II, Op. 5, No. 2
– Impromptu III, Op. 5, No. 3
– Impromptu IV, Op. 5, No. 4
– Impromptu V, Op. 5, No.5
– Impromptu V, Op. 5, No.6
– Impromptu A flat major op. 29
– Impromptu F sharp major op. 36
– Impromptu G flat major op. 51