‘Lost’ Beethoven work reconstructed from sketches

A “lost” movement is to be performed for the first time in more than 200 years, after being pieced together from early drafts.  wrote the slow movement for his string quartet Opus 18 Number Two in 1799 before discarding it and composing another version a year later.

The original has not survived, but has now been reconstructed by Professor Brian Cooper of Manchester University. He has reassembled the surviving sketches, filling in any gaps himself.

Professor Cooper, one of the world’s leading experts on the composer, said preliminary sketches from Beethoven’s notebooks had survived for all 74 bars of the movement. But half of the bars were written for just one instrument, meaning Prof Cooper has completed the missing instrument parts himself.

“You’ve got a pretty good idea of what the music is like,” he told BBC News. “The movement will certainly be strikingly similar to what Beethoven wrote. Obviously it can’t possibly be exactly the same.”

The original movement was delivered to Beethoven’s patron Prince Franz Joseph Maximilian von Lobkowitz in 1799 before being replaced with a revised version.

via BBC News

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