Master class

Frans Helmerson teaches Schubert: Arpeggione Sonata

Treasures of the Masterclass Media Foundation

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Frans Helmerson — Teacher, cellist

Adam Krzeszowiec — Cellist (student)

Program notes

Franz Helmerson, emeritus cello teacher, breathes new life into the arpeggione, this very unique instrument which has practically disappeared today, at the core of one of Schubert's most famous sonatas.

Born in 1945, Swedish cellist Franz Helmerson started to learn the cello at the age of eight. After his studies in Göteborg, Rome and London, he toured with the greatest conductors in Europe, in the United States of America, in Asia and in Russia. He also regularly conducts prestigious Scandinavian ensembles.

Known worldwide as one of the best cello teachers, he teaches at the Musikhochschule in Cologne, where he currently lives, but also at the Escuela Superior de Música Reina Sofía in Madrid and at the Verbier Festival Academy. Watch his masterclass on Schubert's Sonata in A Minor for Arpeggione and Piano, D. 821

Originally composed for arpeggione and piano, this sonata was certainly a commission from his friend and talented guitarist Vincenz Schuster, passionate about the arpeggione. With its six plucked strings, played with a bow, and tuned like a guitar, there are only a dozen of them left in the world. This work is mainly performed with a cello, a viola or sometimes even a double bass.

The Masterclass Media Foundation Archives offers to students and music lovers around the world filmed masterclasses, given by the best talents, on the greatest works of the classical repertoire. Their primary purpose is to provide a valuable educational resource in order to perpetuate passion and knowledge from one generation to another.

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