Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Mozart Concertos on MP3.COM

This is my Tuesday Blog. from Sep-18-2012 

This month’s Once Upon the Internet is a look at a trio of concertos by Mozart. Let’s begin with the last two…

Toronto Symphony Principal chairs Frederick Rizner and Joaquin Valdepenas collaborated with the English Chjamber Orchestra on a Summit Records album of three Mozart concertos. I can’t remember iof MP3.Com provided the Valdepenas Clarinet concerto, but it did provide the pair of horn concertos I am proposing today.

Mozart’s four Horn Concertos (along with Haydn’s and the pair by Richard Strauss) are a major part of most professional horn players' repertoire. The concertos were written for his friend Joseph Leutgeb, whom he had known since childhood. Leitgeb was clearly a skilled player, as the works are very difficult to perform on the natural horn of the period, requiring lip trills, much hand-stopping, and rapid tonguing. Most of us are familiar with the K. 495 finale, a "uite obvious example of the “hunt” topic. Rizner’s playing is at par with most horn soloists in my opinion.

As discussed in opur first Once Upon post on Schubert, Austrian pianist Jorg Demus was a solid contributor to MP3.COM, providing many works by BachSchumann and Mozart. This recording, I believe, is an old RCA Italia jobbie, recorded with the Collegium Aureum of Freiburg Germany. Although more frequent these days (HIP oblige), the use of a period pianoforte was not customary in the 1960’s and 70’s (likely period of the recording), though the excellent work by Dutch pianist and conductor Jos van Immerseel has made this a very acceptable practice.

The Piano Concerto No. 8 in C major, K. 246, also known as the “Lützow” is a contemporary work to the Haffner Serenade. Like the “Jeune Homme” concerto (no. 9), it was written for a female pianist – in this case Countess Antonia Lützow, 25 or 26 years old, who was a fine pianist.

Happy Listening!


Wolfgang Amadeus MOZART (1756 - 1791)

Piano Concerto No. 8 in C major, K. 246 (“Lützow”)
Jörg Demus, pianoforte and conductor
Collegium Aureum
(Downloaded from MP3.COM 25 June 2002)

Horn Concerto No. 3 in E flat major, K. 447
Horn Concerto No. 4 in E flat major, K. 495
Fred Rizner, Horn
English Chamber Orchestra,
Jose-Luis Garcia conducting
(Downloaded from MP3.COM 3 December 2001)

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