Piano Sonata no. 12 in Ab, Op. 26
Beethoven composed his Sonata no. 12, Op. 26, in 1800–1, at the same time as he completed his first symphony. Dedicated to Prince Karl von Lichnowsky -his patron since 1792- the work consists of 4 movements and takes around 20 minutes to perform. It is unconventional in structure, opening with a relatively slow movement in the format of theme and variations. The remaining movements of the sonata proceed according to classical principles in fast-slow-fast alternation. The third movement incorporates a funeral march, clearly anticipating the watershed of the Eroica Symphony that Beethoven wrote in 1803-4. This is the only movement from his sonatas that Beethoven arranged for orchestra, and was played during his own funeral procession. This sonata is also unusual in that none of its four movements is in sonata-allegro form. This piece was quoted by both Schubert and Chopin in later compositions.