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Fanny Hensel: Piano Works

Compact Disc (Audio)
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Fanny Hensel: Piano Works
Fanny Hensel: Piano Works


Sontraud Speidel's selection of works by Fanny Hensel reveals the true diversity and originality of one of the most important women composers. Only a small fraction of Hensel multifaceted oeuvre has entered the repertoire until today, and numerous treasures from her pen are still awaiting discovery.

Fanny Hensel (1805-47) was, without question, one of the most important artists of her time. Unfortunately, her compositions were first published under her own name only a few months before her premature death at the age of 41, following many years of artistic maturity and a long period of obstruction of her public image. Her death was a huge loss to the world of music; her oeuvre comprised almost every genre that was common at the time, with the exception of symphonic works and operas.

Fanny's only documented public performance took place in February 1838, when she performed her brother's First Piano Concerto Op. 25. Fanny gathered experience as a choral and orchestral conductor, chamber musician, and concert organizer. The regular Sunday concerts at the Mendelssohn home, created in 1821 primarily to provide Felix with a forum for presentation and collaboration with professional musicians, were temporarily suspended in 1829. After a two-year hiatus, Fanny revived the musical salon and took over its organizational and artistic direction.

The compositions recorded here were written between 1821 and 1846. Only four of the pieces selected by Sontraud Speidel (numbers 3, 4, 10 and 14) have been recorded previously, the remainder are world premiere recordings. It is worth noting that only a part of the pieces can be regarded as fully formed compositions, i.e. as movements completed by the composer herself, and remained subject to later revision; the only exceptions are numbers 4 and 7.

Sontraud Speidel, described by the Neue Zeitschrift f?r Musik as "the Clara Schumann of today", has performed worldwide as a soloist and chamber musician. Her appearances at music festivals, her recordings for broadcast, television appearances and master classes at music universities have taken her to countries throughout Europe as well as to the United States and Canada, Israel, Russia, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Brazil and Morocco. She has recorded more than 50 albums, several of which have received awards including the Echo Klassik Prize in 2019.


  1. Name
  2. Hensel: Praludium, WV 251
  3. Gigue, WV 127: Allegro
  4. Andante con moto in E Major
  5. Lied Ohne Worte No. 2: Andante
  6. Anhang Klavierstuck in A Minor, WV 42 (Fragment)
  7. Westostucher Redactionswalzer in F-Sharp Major, WV 184
  8. Suleika & Hatem
  9. Fantasia, WV 253
  10. Fuga in E-Flat Major, WV 273
  11. Lied: Andate Espressivo
  12. Allegro grazioso in B Major
  13. Klavierstuck in G Minor, WV 40
  14. 20 Februar 1826 Nach Mitternacht: Allegro ma non troppo
  15. Lied Ohne Worte: Allegro agitato
  16. 13 November 1842: Allegro
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