Molto Adagio in G, Hess 71
Author: Mark S. Zimmer
This brief piano composition (or the beginning of one) is found in the Landsberg 6, or Eroica, sketchbook used by Beethoven between June 1803 and April 1804. This piece is found on page 117 of the sketchbook, just before the serious working out of the Waldstein sonata, op. 53. It may be associated with the fragment Hess 70. Due to its proximity with the Waldstein, it is possible that these fragments were early ideas for a slow movement for the Waldstein. While it is fairly routine for most of its first 10 measures, just before it breaks off it suddenly turns quite strange and anticipates the sound of the Grosse Fuge; it would be quite intriguing to know where Beethoven meant to proceed with this beginning. A world premiere for the Unheard Beethoven, this piece has never before been recorded or published. The original is held in the Biblioteca Jagiellonski in Krakow, Poland, part of the World War II booty seized from the Berlin archives.