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Complete Keyboard Sonatas • 1

Nos. 1–4

  • Kemp English, fortepiano

Few composers exemplified the late eighteenth-century Viennese keyboard style better than Mozart’s contemporary, the Czech composer Leopold Koželuch. A leading performer and teacher, he was even offered Mozart’s former post as court organist to the Archbishop of Salzburg. Preferring instead to preserve his independence, he produced over four decades, a series of major sonatas for fortepiano and harpsichord worthy to stand beside those of Haydn, Mozart, Clementi and Dussek, and as a precursor to those of Beethoven. This is the first volume of the complete recording of Koželuch’s 50 keyboard sonatas.

This recording was made on a period instrument: Fortepiano by Thomas and Barbara Wolf (USA), after Anton Walter (c. 1795).


Piano Sonata in F Major, Op. 1, No. 1, P. XII:8 (1780) (00:17:00 )
I. Allegro molto (00:05:56)
II. Cantabile (00:07:15)
III. Rondeau: Presto (00:03:35)
Piano Sonata in E-Flat Major, Op. 1, No. 2, P. XII:9 (1780) (00:16:00 )
I. Allegro (00:06:36)
II. Poco adagio (00:05:26)
III. Allegro (00:03:47)
Piano Sonata in D Major, Op. 1, No. 3, P. XII:10 (1780) (00:16:00 )
I. Allegro con brio (00:05:36)
II. Poco adagio (00:06:52)
III. Rondeau: Prestissimo (00:03:43)
Piano Sonata in B-Flat Major, Op. 2, No. 1, P. XII:11 (1780) (00:16:00 )
I. Allegro (00:07:16)
II. Adagio (00:04:54)
III. Allegretto scherzando (00:03:52)
World Première Recording
Total Time: 01:04:48

The Artist(s)

Kemp English Kemp English is one of New Zealand’s leading concert performers. Much in demand as a solo organist, collaborative pianist, and specialist fortepiano exponent, he relishes the opportunity to work in a diverse array of styles and periods. He enjoyed a distinguished studentship at the Royal Academy of Music in London and later completed a Master of Arts degree in Music Performance at the University of York. In 2001 he was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy of Music—an honour recognising former students of the Academy who have achieved distinction in the profession.

The Composer(s)

Leopold Koželuch was an esteemed contemporary of Mozart, and in many circles considered the finer composer. He was an early champion of the fortepiano and his Keyboard Sonatas are a treasure trove of late eighteenth-century Viennese keyboard style, including perfect examples of the form and foreshadowing Beethoven and Schubert.


“This is entertaining music, especially when played with English’s panache and vitality” – Early Music

“His [English] light and shade and finger clarity are superb. ” – New Zealand Listener

“The music is dramatic and engaging…this is interesting and satisfying music—both charming and penetrating” – American Record Guide

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