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Rethinking Schubert$
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Lorraine Byrne Bodley and Julian Horton

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190200107

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190200107.001.0001

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Records of Inspiration

Records of Inspiration

Schubert’s Drafts for the Last Three Piano Sonatas Reappraised

(p.173) 9 Records of Inspiration
Rethinking Schubert

Anne M. Hyland

Walburga Litschauer

Oxford University Press

The perception of Schubert as an undisciplined, spontaneous composer who was disinclined to revise is challenged by the existence of extensive continuity drafts and autograph scores for the Piano Sonatas D 958, D 959 and D 960. These drafts represent the most important documents of their kind and offer a means by which to reappraise Schubert’s methods of composition for the piano sonata, particularly of what are arguably his greatest examples of the genre. This chapter charts the compositional evolution of the sketches and autographs, before examining the disparities between the continuity drafts and the final versions of the last three Sonatas. This examination permits a more detailed study of the Piano Sonata in B ♭, D 960, in which a number of key features of Schubert’s customary revisions are analysed from the perspective of thematic construction, phrase structure, hypermetre and performance practice.

Keywords:   late piano sonata trilogy, Piano Sonata in B ♭, D 960, thematic construction, phrase structure, hypermetre, performance practice

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