Beethoven: German Dance in C Major, WoO 8, No. 7 (Intermediate)

This dance opens with a wonderful legato study for both hands. The right-hand, eighth-note melody should be played molto legato with careful finger control, and it must float effortlessly over the accompanying chords. Keeping those left-hand chords legato as well is a slightly trickier task. Using pedal here is not an option, as it would blur the right-hand melody. Rather than instinctively pedaling each downbeat, a better way to connect the chords is to let the keys rise only enough for the hammers to fall back in preparation for the next chord, causing the dampers never to make full contact with the strings. Careful practice of this rather subtle touch can yield a beautiful result, and will also produce a very liquid legato in the right hand. The emphatic broken-octave rumblings in mm. 25-28 display the stormy side of Beethoven, and should be played accordingly and in great contrast to the piano section that follows immediately in mm. 29-32.

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