MENDELSSOHN Felix, Variations Sérieuses Op.54

Felix Mendelssohn’s Variations sérieuses were completed on 4 June 1841 and had been written to encourage contributions for a statue of Beethoven in Bonn. The work was published along with pieces by Liszt, Chopin, Moscheles and Henselt (among others) in a fund-raising ‘Beethoven-Album’. The piece was much admired at the time by Ignaz Moscheles, Mendelssohn’s friend and fellow-contributor to the album, who often included it in his recital programme. It comprises an original theme followed by 17 sharply contrasted variations, the first group gradually building momentum, a solemn chorale (Variation 14), and the brilliant virtuosity of the closing pages. 


Nigel Simeone


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