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Pierre's Tuesday Blog

Mozart - The Late Piano Concertos, Part 3

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This week’s Vinyl’s Revenge completes our look at the TIME LIFE collection of Mozart’s last ten piano concertos, with nos. 20, 24 and 26.

Two pianists featured this week merit some introduction. Karl Engel (1923 - 2006) was a Swiss pianist. He trained in Basel and Paris and distinguished himself as an accompanist, often appearing in Lieder recitals with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Hermann Prey, Peter Schreier and Brigitte Fassbaender. Among his chamber music partners were the cellist Pablo Casals, the violinist Yehudi Menuhin and the Melos Quartet. Karl Engel recorded the complete piano music of Mozart and of Robert Schumann and made numerous recordings with the singers Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, Hermann Prey, Brigitte Fassbaender, Peter Schreier et al. He also recorded a remarkable account of Stravinsky's Piano Concerto.
He later became particularly known for his complete cycle of Mozart piano concertos (recorded between 1974-1976) with the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg under Leopold Hager, from which TIME LIFE used his recording of the :Coronation” concerto, no. 26.

Fans of the Rolling Stones might — if they are fluent in the rarest of their ephemera — know the name Julius Katchen (1926 –1969), the only classical musician ever to be featured on their spirited television program Rock and Roll Circus. Katchen’s appearance, playing De Falla and Mozart, speaks volumes about the vivid personality of the now-largely-forgotten Katchen, a kind of rock ‘n’ roll spirit in the form of a brilliant classical musician, replete with an early death at age forty-two. Mostly remembered for his Brahms performances, Katchen left a number of recordings of the Mozart concertos for DECCA, from which we get one of several recordings of him playing the K. 466 concerto.

To complete the trio, we included Clifford Curzon playing the K. 491 concerto – he left many recordings of this concerto in particular – from his LSO/Kertesz sessions.

Happy listening!

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)

Piano Concerto No. 20 In D Minor, K. 466
Julius Katchen, piano
Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra
Karl Münchinger, conducting

Piano Concerto No. 24 In C Minor, K. 491
Sir Clifford Curzon, piano
London Symphony Orchestra
István Kertész, conducting

Piano Concerto No. 26 In D Major, K. 537
Karl Engel, piano
Salzburg Mozarteum Orchestra
Leopold Hager, conducting

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  1. itywltmt's Avatar
    We are featuring the music from this post as part of our ongoing “222 day Binge Challenge” on the For Your Listening Pleasure podcast November 1, 2021. The following notes are an update with useful links we have created or discovered since the original post.

    Many of the early posts in the Vinyl’s Revenge series did not have an archive page, as we relied entirely on the YouTube playlist discussed in the original post. The archive page for this share uses converted YouTube material:

    The entire TIME-LIFE collection of 10 concertos can be still found on our YouTube channel at the below address: