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Franz Schubert was one of the most prolific composers of ensemble piano music, and the Allegro in A Minor, Op. 144, demonstrates his mastery at writing for one piano, four hands. This large and passionate work was composed in 1828, the year of Schubert's death. It is written in sonata-allegro form and may have been intended as the first movement of a sonata. It was first published by Anton Diabelli in 1840 with the title Lebenssturme: Characterischeres Allegro (Life's Storms: Characteristic Allegro). The Allegro makes extensive use of chromaticism, Neapolitan sixth chords, and contrasts of moods.
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