Album: Andrea Kauten, Schumann: Piano Sonata No 3, 'Symphonic Studies', Novelets Nos 1 & 2 (Sony Classical)

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Robert Schumann used the metaphor of coloured glass to describe the shifting manner of his Symphonic Studies as they vault from the diffident to the imposing, the airy to the fiery.

It's this series that comprises the core of this album of his piano works, Andrea Kauten expertly tracking the basic theme, as it is refracted in unexpected ways, from the forceful chording of the Scherzando fifth to the athletic prancing of the Agitato sixth and the stately brooding of the Sempre Marcatissimo nineth. By comparison, both the Novelletten studies and the Piano Sonata No 3 in F minor seem self-involved, dutiful and dour.

Download this: 'Symphonic Studies' Op 13