Beethoven's annotations to Cramer's twenty-one piano studies : context and analysis of performance
The present study focuses on the annotations Beethoven appended to twenty-one piano studies by John Baptist Cramer, when teaching his nephew Karl. Beethoven held Cramer's collection of studies in high esteem and considered them the best preparatory school for his own works. The reading of his annotations reveals a continual preoccupation with issues such as legato (or bindung in Beethoven's own words), accentuation and the application of poetic feet in the music. This study examines the context of these annotations and applies them to Beethoven's piano music. The author's goal is to stimulate interest in Cramer's neglected Studio per il Pianoforte and to use Beethoven's advice on the execution of these studies as a guide for the performance of his own works. The author believes that this study will serve as a valuable tool to the teachers who teach the piano music of Beethoven and his era, the students who study his music as well as the professional performers of Beethoven's piano works.