Nikolai Medtner’s Piano Sonatas
Analytic Studies on their Genesis, Style, and Compositional Technique
I am currently working on a doctoral thesis on the music of Russian composer Nikolai Karlovich Medtner (1880–1951), whose output of sonatas, comprising eighteen works in total, can be regarded as essential within his oeuvre. Like his compatriots Aleksandr Skryabin and Sergey Prokofiev, Medtner dealt with the piano sonata lifelong and, along with them, transferred the genre from the 19th into the 20th century. Unlike the contemporaries named above, his music is notoriously underrated, despite its great variety of forms and shapes, its sophisticated and rhythmically complex texture, its appealing lyricism and narrativity, and spiritual depth.
I have started a Medtner newsletter, issued 2–3 times a year, with the purpose of spreading information on concerts, recordings, and current research. Please drop me a line in case you want to subscribe.
Recent publications on Medtner include analytical papers on the Sonata Triad and G minor Sonata, Opp. 11 and 22 (in German), and of the Sonata-Ballade, Op. 27 (in English).