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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Exploring Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas by Curtis Institute of Music

4.8
stars
563 ratings
133 reviews

About the Course

Our relationship to Beethoven is a deep and paradoxical one. For many musicians, he represents a kind of holy grail: His music has an intensity, rigor, and profundity which keep us in its thrall, and it is perhaps unequalled in the interpretive, technical, and even spiritual challenges it poses to performers. At the same time, Beethoven’s music is casually familiar to millions of people who do not attend concerts or consider themselves musically inclined. Two hundred years after his death, he is everywhere in the culture, yet still represents its summit. This course takes an inside-out look at the 32 piano sonatas from the point of view of a performer. Each lecture will focus on one sonata and an aspect of Beethoven’s music exemplified by it. (These might include: the relationship between Beethoven the pianist and Beethoven the composer; the critical role improvisation plays in his highly structured music; his mixing of extremely refined music with rougher elements; and the often surprising ways in which the events of his life influenced his compositional process and the character of the music he was writing.) The course will feature some analysis and historical background, but its perspective is that of a player, not a musicologist. Its main aim is to explore and demystify the work of the performer, even while embracing the eternal mystery of Beethoven’s music itself. This season's Curtis courses are sponsored by Linda Richardson in loving memory of her husband, Dr. Paul Richardson. The Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation supports Curtis's lifelong learning initiatives....

Top reviews

M
Jun 2, 2020

This course and Mr. Biss' immense knowledge of Beethoven's sonatas and that era has given me a new interest in classical music. I can understand and speak about it more confidently than ever!

JR
Aug 22, 2016

Fascinating trip through the marvellous Beethoven sonatas.\n\nAlthough I love them since many years, I'm very happy to see that It's always possible to progress.\n\nMany thanks Jonathan.

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51 - 75 of 132 Reviews for Exploring Beethoven’s Piano Sonatas

By Priscilla C

Feb 11, 2018

This course and the other two with Johnathan Biss have greatly expanded my appreciation and understanding of Beethoven's sonatas

By Susan B

Feb 23, 2016

Absolutely loved this course! Jonathan is amazing and he has inspired me so very much. I can hardly wait for his next series.

By Salvador R

Apr 24, 2016

In depth analysis in a field that I was not familiar with. I recommend it to everyone whether they have an interest or not.

By Eamonn P

Nov 4, 2015

Wonderful journey getting to know these sonatas with a very enthusiastic and knowledgeable guide. Thank you for this.

By Emily F

Jul 5, 2017

Excellent course that is accessible and easy to understand. A wonderful combination of music history and listening.

By Fok s k

Aug 14, 2015

Very good demonstration and analyse on Beethoven sonata and raise your interest in further exploring classical music

By Angelina W

Nov 24, 2016

In-depth lectures about Beethoven's life and music. I'm still not a Beethoven fan, but I appreciate his music now.

By Grace V

May 1, 2016

Going through it for the second time this summer. My all time favorite Coursera course, and I've done almost ten...

By John R

Oct 1, 2015

Enjoyed this course. Looking forward to listening to Beethoven's piano sonatas with a slightly more educated ear.

By Anna W

Jan 8, 2016

Excellent course. I think I began to understand and — what is most important for me — feel the music. Thank you!

By William D

May 19, 2016

Outstanding introduction to Beethoven's Piano Sonatas. It has sparked a great interest in me for these pieces.

By Ruth L

Dec 1, 2020

This was an excellent course. Jonathan Bliss was engaging and knowledgeable.

It challenged me. Thank you.

By Benjamin G

Mar 10, 2017

organized, insightful. Mr. Biss clearly has a passion for the music which comes through in his teaching

,

By Kathleen C

Oct 22, 2015

Great lectures, great playing, excellent and enjoyable course. Thank you, Mr. Biss and Curtis Institu

By Do H L

Jun 22, 2016

I have always wanted to learn deeply about Beethoven's Sonatas as I listen to them on a daily basis.

By Sebastian N

Oct 18, 2015

Extremelly interesting! I am so unhappy I don't have enough time now to attend the course properly.

By Axel E M A

Oct 27, 2015

Fantastic course. Thank you so much for sharing all this wonderful insight into Beethoven's works.

By eugenia g c t

Jan 5, 2017

muy pronto regresare a terminarlo solo que primero debo estudiar ingles para entender el idioma

By Nelly M C C

Sep 3, 2016

Although I have completed the course I still go back to it to listen to Prof. Bliss teachings.

By Miriam P S

Jan 29, 2016

Fantastic, excellent musician and incredible mastery of the subject. I enjoyed it enormously.

By Sebastián A P

Jun 5, 2017

Mindblowing, exquisite explanations and a broad look on Beethoven's work. Simply magnificent.

By Vedran S

Sep 13, 2015

Jonathan Biss is a superb musician and instructor! This course is a wonderful resource!

By Yvonne N

May 6, 2020

Excellent course. Enthusiastic, knowledgeable tutor. Brilliant pianist too.

By Alfredo B

Sep 22, 2015

excelent course, gives me the inspiration and motivation that i need!!

By Patricia A C

Sep 19, 2015

Excellent course. Jonathan is a great pianist and a great instructor.