String Quintet WoO 62, 1st, 2d, 3rd and 4th Movement Fragments (mp3)
Performer: Mark S. Zimmer
Author: Mark S. Zimmer
With the exception of a few short canons and fragments, this piece bears the significance of being the very last music Beethoven wrote, along with the replacement finale for quartet op. 130. The quintet was unfinished at Beethoven's death; he really only had this introduction to the first movement and a few fragments completed. At the auction of Beethoven's effects, the publisher Anton Diabelli bought the manuscript for this quintet. Instead of publishing it as a very very short quintet -- not very marketable -- Diabelli arranged the quintet (or had it arranged) for piano two hands, and piano four hands. Unfortunately, the original manuscript has been lost, so that Diabelli's published arrangements for piano are the only thing that remains to us. This is why this string quintet is listed by Kinsky-Halm amongst the piano pieces on the WoO list.
The MIDI file for the introduction is another instance of reverse engineering; we took the piano arrangements and made them into a string quintet piece. In one file, we have the more-or-less complete introduction to first movement; in another file the fragments which are known to exist for the fast section of the first movement and the other three movements. The intended structure of the quintet, according to Martin Staehlin was 1) the slow introduction and a fast section, both in C major; 2) A 9/8 Andante in G major; 3) a 3/4 Presto-Scherzo in C minor; and 4) An Allegro 6/8 finale in C major.