With this poetic masterpiece all four of the recently revised “Ballades” (HN 862) are now available as single editions. Following a restrained opening in C major and the first dreamy sounds of the theme, the tension continually increases to the brilliant closing coda before the work finally fades away after four chords.
Two autograph scores survive for the fourth ballade, although they are merely fragments. However, the first editions provide important information, particularly since Chopin undertook further corrections after the first printing. Details regarding the genesis of this work and an evaluation of the sources can be found in the explanatory texts in this edition; detailed information can also be downloaded free-of-charge.