Ariel Lanyi (piano): The Musicians’ Company #MiddayMusic

Ariel Lanyi joined the Musicians' Company Young Artists' Programme after he won our Royal Academy of Music Harriet Cohen Bach Prize in 2018, and our Prince's Prize in 2018. Here he performs Beethoven’s Andante Favori. Ariel says: "The Andante Favori was initially intended to be the second movement of Beethoven’s 'Waldstein' sonata, but it ended up being a standalone work. Had it been the second movement of the muscular and heroic 'Waldstein' sonata, it would have inevitably been compared to the outer movements, but fortunately, as a separate work, we can focus on its qualities without drawing any comparisons. As is often the case with Beethoven, the Andante Favori offers both the performer and the listener a wide range of characters, conflicts, and contradictions. The first phrase of this work poses an immediate question: what is this work? Is it a minuet, as alluded to by the rhythm of the melody? Or should we follow the harmony and the texture, in which case it starts as a chorale? The work abounds with such exciting puzzles and questions. But there is one aspect of the piece which I find especially endearing. It was on the advice of a friend that Beethoven extracted the Andante from the 'Waldstein' sonata and replaced it with a short transitional second movement. In the context of the 'Waldstein', the Andante would be hugely incongruent, going diametrically against the character of the sonata. Could it be that Beethoven’s modesty in heeding his friend’s advice is somehow implicit in the work’s elegance and gracefulness? And if so, what do we make of the expansive coda in which there is a passionate and almost tumultuous passage of octaves, in stark contrast to the elegance of the rest of the piece, and much in line with Beethoven’s unrelenting and heroic style of the middle period? Could contradiction be intrinsic to this work?" Ariel has given numerous recitals in cities such as London, Paris (including Hôtel des Invalides and Radio France), Rome, Prague, Brussels, and regularly in concerts broadcast live on Israeli radio and television. He has appeared as a soloist with a variety of orchestras in the United Kingdom and Israel. He was awarded first prize at the 2017 Dudley International Piano Competition following a performance of Mozart’s Concerto in C minor, K. 491 in the final round, and in 2018, the first prize in the Grand Prix Animato in Paris. -------------------------------------------------- Musicians' Company Profile - About our RAM Harriet Cohen Bach Prize - About our Prince's Prize - Ariel's Website - Ariel's Facebook - Ariel's Twitter - Ariel's YouTube - -------------------------------------------------- Join our weekly #MiddayMusic e-news at #MiddayMusic is supported by funds from the Musicians' Company’s Prince’s Prize which received a generous endowment in 2015 from The Eranda Rothschild Foundation and Rothschilds Bank, in memory of Leopold de Rothschild, a Liveryman of the Musicians’ Company for over 50 years. Donate to support The Musicians' Company Young Artists -