“Playing Beethoven only gets more challenging”
That statement and its many variants is one of those musical truisms one hears so often, one almost ceases to be aware of what it means.
It’s not a statement I would make about every composer- demanding as it is, Richard Strauss’s music gets easier as you get to know it. Find a good fingering, do some slow practice, live with it a while, and those impossible-looking tone poems start to feel much less daunting.
But we’re talking about Beethoven.
Is it true?
And if so, why so?
My old cello teacher, Lee Fiser from the La Salle Quaret, used to liken the physical challenge of cello playing to pouring water through a funnel the wrong way. If you can be precise ...