Uniquely for their era, Beethoven's cello sonatas assign the piano an equal role to the lead instrument. The Sonata in F major, op. 5/1; Sonata in G Minor, op. 5/2; 12 Variations on Themes from Handel's Judas Maccabaeus; and 12 Variations on "Ein Mädchen oder Weibchen" from Mozart's The Magic Flute are played here by cellist Wen-Sinn Yang, the first prize winner at the 1991 Geneva International Music Competition. In this 2004 live performance at the Tonhalle Zürich, Yang is accompanied by Grand Prix du Disque winner Werner Bärtschi. The liner notes include a lively, thoughtful interview with the two musicians.
"[Yang] has an extraordinary grasp of the philosophical dimension of the works he plays."—Lorin Maazel