Kapustin composed his first Piano Sonata, op. 39, in 1984 - surprisingly late in his career. Its subtitle, Sonata-Fantasia, and the fact that the first three movements are played without a break, give the impression of a constant stream of thought; the first movement certainly has an improvisatory feel and the second begins in an equally searching way. But in the scherzo and finale it is obvious that the composer is unable to repress his love of the sheer physical aspect of playing; the finale, especially, is an unstoppable tour de force.
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