Label: Deutsche Grammophon (DG)
After critically successful recordings of Chopin and Liszt, 23-year-old German-Japanese pianist Alice Sara Ott releases her first Beethoven set with a bold agenda: demonstrating the two distinct personalities of the composer using a pair of C-major sonatas, the Op. 2 No. 3 and the Op. 53 "Waldstein." The prior of these -- light, mercurial and joyous -- was dedicated to Haydn, and the latter -- brooding and pensive -- was written near the end of his life when his hearing was failing. Ott capably bridges this divide with clean, confident playing, restraint in her pedaling and plenty of power.