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Thread: Mozart performed on Period Instruments

  1. #31
    Senior Member JSBach85's Avatar
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    Back to the Mozart's Requiem, I have been purchasing and listening more recordings. The last recording was Jacobs/Freiburger Barockorchester:



    The recording of Jacobs follows the Sussmayr edition completed by the contemporary French composer Pierre-Henri Dutron. Jacobs conducting is forceful and also presents a good balance between voices and orchestra is achieved by using a smaller choir with respect to other recordings. Unlike Suzuki and Christie recordings, the tempi are sometimes too risky, with some very hasty sections. The performance of Freiburger Barockorchester is as usual extraordinary, with great transparency and clarity on string instruments. The main problem of this recording is that it is a too risky bet for the tempi of some sections and the overornamentation that Dutron has incorporated on the Sussmayr edition, the decision of Jacobs to introduce these variations does not quite like me. Summarizing, I am not happy with this recording and I prefer others instead.

    Suzuki/Bach Collegium Japan



    I got Suzuki recording last week along with Jacobs, it is a reconstruction on the Sussmayr edition. As positive aspects, as is usual in Suzuki, the conducting is very careful and transparent, the tempi are not risky and a good cohesion between voices and instruments is achieved, however, it lacks the luminosity and contrast of Christie and Herreweghe recordings. The vocal cast is good, standing out the soprano Carolyn Sampson and the tenor Makoto Sakurada, although in the vocal aspect in general I prefer Gardiner. The sound recording is very good, in this aspect it stands out in the same way as the recording of Butt.

    Butt/Dunedin Consort



    John Butt also follows the Sussmayr edition, but it is also a reconstruction of the premiere / first performance of the complete work in 1793. I bought this recording in December, relying on the good reviews it has received in other forums. The main difference compared to other versions is the use of a reduced choir of 16 singers and its main virtue is that it achieves an extraordinary balance between the choir and the orchestra. Other positive aspects of this recording are the solid, contrasted and energetic direction, as well as a varied orchestra that provides a colorful instrumental performance. The sound capture is very good, which contributes to better appreciate all the textures.

    This is a translation of a review I've done last week in a spanish forum concerning my last purchases on Mozart's Requiem, I also have my opinion of the other ones I own: Herreweghe (my favourite recording), Gardiner and Christie. I am a little dissapointed of Jacobs so that following your advice and my criteria, I finally decided to order Bruggen recording on Glossa since I noticed in samples that is well balanced and more academic than Jacobs. I may consider Hogwood later on since has good opinions.

  2. #32
    Senior Member Larkenfield's Avatar
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    I find it a strange irony that some of these fine period performances designed to capture the authentic sound of the period, such as the Pinnock and Bruggen, have an added artificial ambiance. I think that very much detracts from the overall impression and adds a note of falsity. Only the Hogwood sounds natural and honest in its setting and ambiance. Not to have a period recording with honest acoustics seems like a contradiction of terms. I'm for a natural ambiance as much as possible, or only add a little extra without it becoming so noticeable. The ambiance is quite apparent using headphones, with too much sound hanging artificially in the air and spoiling the period effects. Just a personal preference of mine, probably not important to anyone else.
    Last edited by Larkenfield; Jan-22-2018 at 13:07.
    Great things are done by a series of small things brought together...Vincent Van Gogh

  3. #33
    Senior Member JSBach85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larkenfield View Post
    I find it a strange irony that some of these fine period performances designed to capture the authentic sound of the period, such as the Pinnock and Bruggen, have an added artificial ambiance. I think that very much detracts from the overall impression and adds a note of falsity. Only the Hogwood sounds natural and honest in its setting and ambiance. Not to have a period recording with honest acoustics seems like a contradiction of terms. I'm for a natural ambiance as much as possible, or only add a little extra without it becoming so noticeable. The ambiance is quite apparent using headphones, with too much sound hanging artificially in the air and spoiling the period effects. Just a personal preference of mine, probably not important to anyone else.
    Well... As far as I know, Historically Informed Performance is just an approach to the performance of classical music, which aims to be faithful to the approach, manner and style of the era in which a work was originally conceived. I hope nobody belive and assume that this was exactly what music sounded centuries ago. We never know about how music sounded centuries ago, nobody was there. If someone wants authenticity, then there is no point to listen any work in a CD or DVD, because this is not authentic in any way. Then, we all should listen to Early Music in a 18th century hall or church, everybody with 18th century costumes, with candlelights, forgive about microphones, amplifiers and other sounds (no cars, no motorbikes, no planes, no mobile phones) probably performed somewhere in the middle of the field.

    Concerning Mozart's Requiem, we must recreate the situation in 1793, but which musicians? what about the tempi used by this time? what about the choir size? We must forgive then about just listening the Requiem movements as we know today and then contextualize the Requiem within a strict Catholic religious rite, with all the ordinary parts of a catholic mass, understood the Requiem as a strict Catholic religious office. Women singing? That is a heresy, men and kids trained to sing from their earliest childhood.

    In addition to this, everybody remember... Nowadays musicians, performers, follow a modern 21th century life. By those times a composer lived to compose and play music and that's it, kids were trained and lived to sing and this was the only purpose of their lifes. Yes, life was fairly harder...

  4. #34
    Senior Member JSBach85's Avatar
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    Regarding Piano Concertos, I finally ordered and got Gardiner / Bilson. The English Baroque Soloists. as a first approach to this works:



    I have been listening to some random piano concertos of Sofronitzki/Musicae Antiquae Collegium Varsoviense and Immerseel/Anima Eterna through youtube. I have a fairly easy question: why Sofronitzki plays harpsichord in earlier piano concertos while Gardiner and Immerseel plays fortepiano? Which criteria would you consider more correct in terms of using harpsichord/fortepiano in early piano concertos?
    Last edited by JSBach85; Jan-26-2018 at 22:26.

  5. #35
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    Mozart's three K. 107 concertos are often considered 'harpischord' concertos because they were (1) early Mozart, composed in 1771, and (2) based on sonatas by J.C. Bach. I recall that Ton Koopman has likewise recorded them on a harpischord.

  6. #36
    Senior Member KenOC's Avatar
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    Mozart’s Piano Concerto KV175 in D major, usually called No. 5, is his first fully original work in that form and dates from late 1773. Arthur Schoonderwoerd’s recorded version is played on the harpsichord, and the program notes argue that, for technical reasons, it is certain that the concerto was written for that instrument.

    Mozart resurrected that every early work some years later, in 1782, for a concert in Vienna, though he wrote a new final movement for it. On the same CD, Schoonderwoerd performs that version of the KV175 on a tangent piano.

    Last edited by KenOC; Jan-27-2018 at 02:20.


  7. #37
    Senior Member JSBach85's Avatar
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    Regarding the german opera "Die Entführung aus dem Serail" (The Abduction from the Seraglio) I am now listening Gardiner through youtube and I like it:



    Which recording of this opera played on period instruments would you recommend?

  8. #38
    Senior Member wkasimer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JSBach85 View Post
    Regarding the german opera "Die Entführung aus dem Serail" (The Abduction from the Seraglio) I am now listening Gardiner through youtube and I like it:

    Which recording of this opera played on period instruments would you recommend?
    The recent Jacobs is my HIP Entfuhrung of choice. Lots of energy, and very well sung:

    jacobs.jpg

  9. #39
    Senior Member JSBach85's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wkasimer View Post
    The recent Jacobs is my HIP Entfuhrung of choice. Lots of energy, and very well sung:

    jacobs.jpg
    Thank you for your recommendation, Jacobs seems to be a solid conductor for this opera as usual.

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