In early 19th-century Austria the Archduke Rudolph occupied multiple roles: a noble Hapsburg by birth a Cardinal-Archbishop by career and a dedicated musician by avocation. A talented pianist and composer Archduke Rudolph enjoyed the unique privilege of being Beethoven's only composition student and in the two decades of studying with him produced a sizable and well-crafted body of music for piano chamber ensemble and voice. Many of the Archduke's autograph manuscripts were corrected in detail by Beethoven giving us fascinating insights into Beethoven's thinking on the structure and syntax of music. This comprehensive book surveys Archduke Rudolph's life and career in music which also encompasses his significant role as music patron and collector. It is based on a study of primary sources principally the autograph manuscripts of his compositions and sketches and most importantly Beethoven's own autographs-including sketches corrections on the Rudolph manuscripts and a four-measure theme composed expressly for Rudolph's use-produced here in facsimile for the first time.
Other primary sources examined include the Archduke's correspondence with Beethoven and members of the Imperial household the catalogues of Rudolph's music collection and documents related to his ecclesiastical career. The thematic catalogue of Archduke Rudolph's music lists all of his finished and unfinished works in chronological order as well as sketches copies and transcriptions. Fifty illustrations and 190 musical examples are also provided.
Pianist Susan Kagan has pursued a career in music, as a performer, scholar, and critic. Her career has included appointments as orchestra pianist with the St. Louis and Pittsburgh Symphonies and appearances with both orchestras as soloist in concertos by Mozart, Beethoven, Grieg, Ravel, and Bartók. Ms. Kagan was pianist of the St. Louis New Music Circle, the Nieuw Amsterdam Trio, and is currently pianist of the New York-based chamber music group Colleagues in Concert.
Ms. Kagan recorded a solo piano CD of works of Beethoven and his two students, Archduke Rudolph and Ferdinand Ries, which appeared on Koch records. Her premiere recording of the complete piano sonatas and sonatinas of Ferdinand Ries, in five volumes, has been released by Naxos Records. Most recently, Ms. Kagan recorded a set of twelve keyboard sonatas by Christian Gottlob Neefe, Beethoven’s teacher in Bonn, also for Naxos Records.
Susan Kagan is a well-known critic and musicologist. Her book, Archduke Rudolph, Beethoven’s Patron, Pupil, and Friend, first published in 1988 by Pendragon Press, has recently been reprinted, and she has edited Archduke Rudolph’s music for A-R Editions, Inc., and Doblinger-Verlag.
Susan Kagan attended the University of Chicago, graduated cum laude from Columbia University, and earned a Ph.D. in Musicology from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. She recently retired from Hunter College, where she taught music history, and was founder and president of the New York Chapter of the American Beethoven Society.