For many collectors in the 1960s, the budget priced Vox Turnabout LPs of the Beethoven Sonatas and Concertos were a revelation, and introduced an amazing young talent to the public.
Alfred Brendel was born in 1931 in Wiesenberg, and won the Concorso Busoni in 1949. He studied with Edwin Fischer, Paul Baumgartner and Edward Steuermann.
The Vox Beethoven recordings won the Grand Prix du Disque in 1965, and were praised by critics world-wide.
These early recordings illustrate clearly all the characteristics that would become a hallmark of Brendel’s playing.
A refusal to fall back on ‘flashy’ bravura, and the intellectual rigour he brings to the Beethoven sonatas marked him out even in these early recordings as one of the very great pianists of the 20th century. Brendel retired from the musical scene in 2009 at the height of his powers, leaving a recorded legacy without parallel in the music of Beethoven, Mozart and Schubert.