All About Ludwig van Beethoven

Information on Beethoven, his life, his music and classical sheet music

Best 5 Beethoven Books on Amazon

1.Beethoven: The Universal Composer by Edmund Morris

2.Beethoven by Maynard Solomon

3.Beethoven: The Music and the Life by Lewis Lockwood

4.Late Beethoven: Music, Thought, Imagination by Maynard Solomon

5.Beethoven as I Knew Him by Anton Felix Schindler

Classical Sheet Music Downloads at Virtual Sheet Music

The Appassionata Sonata

Sonata in F minor op. 57 also known under the title of "Appassionata" was composed by Beethoven in 1804, but was only recorded in 1806. The theme of the finale was composed during a stroll in the surroundings of Dobling. The sonata was dedicated to Franz Brunswick, Thereza’s brother. It is one of the sonatas characterized by organic unity of the constituting parts, thus allowing the public to understand the meaning of the work. In Appassionata, Beethoven rendered the richness of nature’s forces and the immense power of man who manages to overcome it.


The Appassionata has three parts:

I. Allegro Assai

II. Andante con moto - attacca

III. Allegro, ma non troppo - Presto

The first part – Allegro assai – starts with a theme based on two contrasting motifs, the first one rendering revolt and the second one, reminding of the motif in Symphony No. 5, unraveling the dark forces.

Excerpt from the Appassionata Sonata, Part I

The second motif, short, but insistently repeated, is the one around which the fierce battle takes place.

Excerpt from the Appassionata Sonata, Second motif

The second theme of the first part is calm, tranquil, thus in powerful contrast with the first one.

Excerpt from the Appassionata Sonata, Second theme

In the second part – Andante con moto – the theme brings great warmth, kindness and intimacy, whereas the ending brings the listener in an atmosphere of fierce struggle with the forces of nature out of which man will once more be victorious.

The third part is a sonata-allegro in which, very unusually, only the second part is directed to be repeated. The movement is a perpetuum mobile, with rapid-sixteenth notes that are interrupted only in the development and in the coda. The movement is mysteriously complex and fast-paced in nature. It has been called many things by music critics — passionate, despairing, and breath-taking.

Beethoven's Appassionata is condisdered by many to be one of Beethoven's three great piano sonatas from his middle creation period and remains a peak of the chamber music and implicitly of the piano sonatas.

Read more about Beethoven's music