Beethoven was the first great composer of cello sonatas in the Romantic style, and he remained really the only one until Brahms wrote two at the end of the 19th century. Few composers have attempted to compose sonatas for cello and piano, owing to the difficulties of balance between the two instruments, though the exceptions have been notable, and beautiful. Beethoven's works for Cello and piano come from each of his three stylistic periods - the very early Sonatas Op. 5 represent Beethoven's move away from the classical style of Haydn and Mozart; the popular Sonata in A Major, Op. 69 stands firmly rooted in Beethoven's Middle Period and shares it's sweeping melodic lines with those in "Eroica" and the "Harp" String Quartet, while the Sonatas Op. 102 already point to elliptical language of the late String Quartets.
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