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Discussion Starter · #341 ·
So let us turn from Opera (the last five entries) to
the PIANO CONCERTO.

I've presented several concertos already on this list, including five PIANO CONCERTOS.

So let's get the exposition out of the way, shall we?

A concerto is a classical music composition that highlights a solo instrument against the background of a full orchestra. Practically every orchestral instrument has concertos written for it, with the violin, the cello, and the piano probably being the most common (and the flute perhaps running a close 4th).

There are also concertos for groups of instruments, where 2 or more solo instruments are featured.

Most concertos have three sections or movements, and in the 19th century they were especially popular as a way to showcase virtuoso playing by the soloist.

Piano Concertos (or Keyboard concerti) were common in the time of Johann Sebastian Bach in the Baroque music era (although there were plenty of concertos for individual stringed or woodwind instruments), during the Classical music period, and during the Romantic music era (approx. 1800-1910). Keyboard concertos are also written by contemporary classical music composers.

20th- and 21st-century piano concertos may include experimental or unusual performance techniques. In the 20th and 21st century, J.S. Bach's harpsichord concertos are often played on piano. There are variant types of piano concertos, including double piano concertos, for two solo pianists and orchestra, and double or triple (or larger solo groups) concertos in which the piano soloist is joined by a violinist, cellist, or another instrumentalist.

My Beginner's Guide to Classical Music has already had five piano concertos listed, including perhaps the greatest piano concerto of all time,

Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 (Emperor) (which came in at #96, well after two others):
Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Major: Op.50 (#43) from 1806, and
Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 20 (#53) [a Top 10 Concerto].

Also already listed are

Grieg's Piano Concerto (#118) [probably the 4th best Piano Concerto of all time], and
Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1 (#128) [probably the 2nd best Piano Concerto of all time]

Which brings us to the 3rd best Piano Concerto of all time (and the first on the list from the 20th Century) . . .

.

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#166
Piano Concerto No. 2
Sergei Rachmaninov

1901

The Piano Concerto No. 2 in C minor, Op. 18 is one of Rachmaninoff's most enduringly popular pieces.

It is so popular that several successful pop songs can be traced directly from this piece.

The second theme of Allegro scherzando provides the basis for Frank Sinatra's 1945 "Full Moon and Empty Arms".[9] And two songs recorded by Sinatra also have roots in the first movement of the concerto: "I Think of You" and "Ever and Forever".

The Adagio sostenuto theme appears in Eric Carmen's 1975 ballad "All by Myself".

You can also hear it (or selections from it) in over over a dozen films, starting as early as 1932 with the adaptation of Grand Hotel with Greta Garbo. You'll also hear in Brief Encounter (1945), The Seven Year Itch (1955), Center Stage (2000), and Hereafter (2010).

But this whole concerto is one of the greatest works in the piano repertoire.

But let's start with the bit that everyone knows, the 2nd movement, partly because of the final scene of this 1945 film, Brief Encounter . . .






The melody from Eric Carmen's All By Myself became a hit partly on the dramatic middle section from the second movement (the single cut it down considerably, but here's the full-length version). The instrumental section starts around 2:45.





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This concerto is sometimes said to have saved Rachmaninoff's compositional career, after his first piano concerto tanked (or maybe it was his Symphony No. 1 in D Minor).

"In his youth, Rachmaninoff was subject to emotional crises over the success or failure of his works as well as his personal relationships. Self-doubt and uncertainty carried him into deep depressions, one of the most severe of which followed the failure, on its first performance in March 1897, of his Symphony No. 1 in D Minor. The symphony was poorly performed, and the critics condemned it. During this period, while brooding over an unhappy love affair, he was taken to a psychiatrist, Nikolay Dahl, who is often credited with having restored the young composer's self-confidence, thus enabling him to write the Piano Concerto No. 2 (which is dedicated to Dahl)." - Britannica

OK, you ready?

Rachmaninoff: "Do not waste your time with music that is trite or not noble. Life is too short to spend it wandering in the barren Saharas of musical trash."


Here's Anna Fedorova with Martin Panteleev conducting the Nordwestdeutsche Philharmonie, recorded live in 2013 at the Koninklijk Concertgebouw in Amsterdam.



00:05 I. Moderato
11:37 II. Adagio sostenuto
23:49 III. Allegro scherzando



 

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Discussion Starter · #342 ·
#167
Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54
Robert Schumann
1845

Schumann
, until 1840, wrote exclusively for the piano, so it's somewhat surprising that he wrote only one piano concerto.

Allegro affettuoso
Intermezzo: Andantino grazioso
Allegro vivace


There is no break between these last two movements (attacca subito).

Schumann preferred that the movements be listed in concert programs as only two movements:

Allegro affettuoso
Andantino and Rondo


The basic idea expressed in the work is that of yearning and happiness between two loving people. Schumann musically transforms his fight to marry his wife Clara in this work, who, incidentally, premiered the work.

Clara Schumann wrote after the premiere: "... how rich in invention, how interesting from the beginning to the end, how fresh and what a beautiful coherent whole!"

Special emphasis was placed on the skilful, colorful and independent orchestral treatment, that would leave room for piano and orchestra alike.

It has become one of the most widely performed and recorded piano concertos from the Romantic period.

Here's Khatia Buniatishvili with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Zubin Mehta.


 

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Discussion Starter · #343 · (Edited)
#168
Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor, Op. 15
Johannes Brahms
1858


I. Maestoso
II. Adagio
III. Rondo: Allegro non troppo


The work reflects Brahms's effort to combine the piano with the orchestra as equal partners in a symphonic-scale structure, in emulation of the classical concertos of Mozart and Beethoven, instead of the earlier model of an orchestra simply accompanying the pianist.

This first concerto demonstrates Brahms's particular interest in scoring for the timpani and the horn, both of whose parts are difficult and prominent.

In an all-too-familiar story, the piece's second premiere in Leipzeig received a chilly reception, and it was never held in such high esteem as other Romantic piano war-horses of the period. Now, however, it’s a very different story: this is one of the best-loved and most frequently performed piano concertos in the world, and is considered to be a masterpiece.

As a masterpiece there are several excellent versions available on YouTube, by some of the most important names in music.

There's a great version by the legendary virtuoso Arthur Rubinstein. The video with Bernard Haitink conducting the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam is from 1973 and showcases a remarkably great orchestra and an 83 year old Rubinstein. The tempo is slow, and Rubinstein not a showman. Both Rubinstein and Haitink are probably of the opinion that the music speaks for itself.

There's Yuja Wang, a fairly new sensation on the pianist circuit. Her version is HIGHLY recommended - she's a joy to watch perform. It's as though she's making love to the music as she plays. This 2017 performance is with Valery Gergiev conducting the Münchner Philharmoniker.

There's one from extraordinary pianist Emanuel Ax, also with a much older Bernard Haitink conducting and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra again, this time in 2011. Haitink seems to be conducting with more gusto than he did over three decades previously when conducting with Rubinstein at the piano.

And one from Daniel Barenboim with the Munchner Philharmoniker conducted by the equally famous Sergiu Celibidache. Barenboim has a wonderfully sensitive touch . . . very romantic.

And it's so difficult to choose just one. But I have: Here's the most wonderful Helene Grimaud, whose interpretation/performance is so wonderfully personal, strong, forceful, and tender. Solid phrasing and dynamics. With her in 2005 is the Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra conducted by Michael Gielen


 

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Discussion Starter · #344 ·
#169
Piano Concerto in G major
Maurice Ravel
1932


Ravel's Piano Concerto in G major, M. 83 (not to be confused with his Piano Concerto for the Left Hand) is heavily jazz influenced.

Ravel remarked that "The most captivating part of jazz is its rich and diverting rhythm. ... Jazz is a very rich and vital source of inspiration for modern composers and I am astonished that so few Americans are influenced by it."

I. Allegramente
II. Adagio assai
III. Presto


Surprisingly, Ravel was aiming to write was something light, fanciful and not inherently serious: "In the spirit", as he said, "of Mozart and Saint-Saens. The music of a concerto should, in my opinion, be lighthearted and brilliant, and not aim at profundity or at dramatic effects. It has been said of certain classics that their concertos were written not "for" but "against" the piano. I heartily agree. I had intended to title this concerto "Divertissement." Then it occurred to me that there was no need to do so because the title “Concerto” should be sufficiently clear."

It is of note that many "throwaway" works by composers often end up being pieces for which they're remembered fondly: Carnival of the Animals, Peter and the Wolf, etc.

Anyway, I'd mentioned Yuja Wang previously, so here she is with the Camerata Salzburg conducted by Lionel Bringuier in 2016 at the Salzburg.


 

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Discussion Starter · #345 · (Edited)
#60 Encore Edition
From Post #170

Piano Concerto No. 21 in C Major, K. 467
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

1785

Mozart
's Piano Concerto No. 20 in D minor is #53 on this list, and was completed only four weeks before the Piano Concerto in D Minor.

I. Allegro maestoso
II. Andante
III. Allegro vivace assai


The second movement was featured in the 1967 Swedish film Elvira Madigan, resulting in the piece becoming widely known as the "Elvira Madigan concerto".

Neil Diamond's 1972 song "Song Sung Blue" was based on a theme from the andante movement of this concerto.

Here's pianist Yeol Eum Son and conductor Alexey Utkin.

 

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Discussion Starter · #346 ·
#170
Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 102
Dmitri Shostakovich

1957

Shostakovich remarked that this Piano Concerto No. 2 has “no redeeming artistic merits”.

I'm guessing it just sounded too cheerful to him.

Yuja Wang with the Philadelphia Orchestra conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin at Carnegie Hall in 2021

 

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:) You're obviously more familiar with M Haydn, so why do you consider Pichon's interpretation to be "the best"?
Listen to that recording of the Dies Irae movement, for instance, the "HIP sound" and the pace of tempo and dynamics (the sense of "urgency" it creates)— it feels so "right" to me. Also listen to the "Quam olim abrahae" fugue,
The way to reach the dominant from i64, with the chromatic ascent C -> C# -> D, with the major second [ G, A ] on the top
(D -> C -> C# -> D | G -> F# | Bb -> A)
Dzmj8lRLHh0&t=16m50s sounds so eerie
It's just the feeling I get from Pichon's and none of the others, such Ivor Bolton's. (maybe it's because it's the one I'm most familiar with. What do you think?).
 

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Discussion Starter · #350 ·
Listen to that recording of the Dies Irae movement, for instance, the "HIP sound" and the pace of tempo and dynamics (the sense of "urgency" it creates)— it feels so "right" to me. Also listen to the "Quam olim abrahae" fugue,

It's just the feeling I get from Pichon's and none of the others, such Ivor Bolton's. (maybe it's because it's the one I'm most familiar with. What do you think?).
I hate making snap judgements, so I'll get back to you in a few weeks.

Having heard this though raises my opinion of M Haydn. There was something else from him I listened to last week as well that I thought was really good. Can't remember what it was now though. :unsure:
 

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Discussion Starter · #352 ·
43. Beethoven - Concerto No. 4 in G Major, Op.50 (1806)
53. Mozart – Piano Concerto No. 20 (1785)
60. Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21
96. Beethoven – Piano Concerto No. 5 (1811)
118. Grieg - Piano Concerto (1868)
128. Tchaikovsky - Piano Concerto No.1 (1875/1888)

166. Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2
167. Schumann Piano Concerto
168. Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 1
169. Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G major
170. Shostakovich’s Piano Concerto No.2 (1957)


So there it is - five piano concertos in a row.
With the previous 6 on the list, that’s two each from both Beethoven and Mozart.

So, speaking of Mozart, he's usually referred to as one of the "Big Three" (along with Bach and Beethoven).

On The Beginner’s Guide he's already been mentioned 15 times, more than anyone else on the list so far:

#8. Symphony 41 in C "Jupiter”
#10. Overture from The Marriage of Figaro
#32. Symphony No. 40 in G Minor
#35. Requiem in D minor
#53. Piano Concerto No. 20

#60. Piano Concerto No. 21 "Elvira Madigan"
#67. Symphony No. 35
#83. Symphony No. 36
#95. Overture from The Magic Flute
#106. Symphony No. 37

#129. Symphony No. 38
#155. Symphony No. 39
#159. Horn Concerto No. 3
#164. Don Giovani
#170. Piano Concerto No. 21


Included are his Symphonies #35-41. Seven. In a row.
Four concertos, the Requiem, one opera, and two opera overtures.
As a pianist, I'm actually pretty fond of his piano sonatas, and somehow not a single one has made the list so far.

But what is missing from the list that ought to be added RIGHT NOW? Here's five from Mozart.

Let's start with

#171
The Marriage of Figaro
WA Mozart

1786

The Marriage Of Figaro (Le Nozze Di Figaro), premiered in 1786, is an ideal place to begin an exploration of the best Mozart works and the opera’s ‘Overture’ (on this list at #10) sets its mood perfectly.

It seems to have been Mozart’s own idea to set the scandalous play by Pierre-Augustin Caron De Beaumarchais, which had already been banned in Paris and Vienna, but what cannot be spoken can sometimes be sung. A suitably adapted opera libretto by his new collaborator Lorenzo Da Ponte produced from the composer a score that matches the swiftly changing moods of this busy, intricate, and amorous comedy.

This enchanting opera tells the story of the Count and Countess Almaviva and two of their staff – the maid Susanna and the count’s valet Figaro. The opera actually follows on from the plot of The Barber of Seville (famously made into an opera by Rossini) and contains some of Mozart’s most wonderful music including Cherubino’s beautifully simple “Voi che sapete”, and the soprano aria ”Porgi, amor”, and the “Sull’aria” duet – which famously makes an appearance in The Shawshank Redemption, and which I've accompanied many times in concert.

It’s lively, cheeky, and funny. Mozart had a sense of humour, and there’s no mistaking it in this cheerful opera. It’s a great love-story, with a few cases of mistaken identity, trickery, and practical jokes thrown in for good measure.

I think that opera composers are vastly overrated. How does one create 2-3 hours of music that must include the libretto and the storyline?

Orchestra e coro del Teatro alla Scala



 

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Discussion Starter · #353 ·
#170
Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 102
Dmitri Shostakovich

1957
I honestly thought I'd get a flurry of comments on this one, either to tell us all why it's so great, or why it sucks, or some accolades for including a somewhat more recent work, or shaming me for my lack of more recent works.

It's one of only nine pieces on the list that were written in the 2nd half of the 20th Century (i.e. post-1950):

80. Steve Reich – Music for 18 Musicians [1976]
81. Stockhausen – Gesang der Jünglinge [1956]
84. Legeti – Requiem [1965]
86. Krzysztof Penderecki – Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima [1960]
#114. Britten - Cello Symphony (Symphony for Cello and Orchestra), Op. 68 (1963 /1964)
#154. Ligeti - Atmospheres (1961)
#156. Stockhausen – Kontakte (1960)
#157. Glass – Glassworks (1981)
#170. Shostakovich - Piano Concerto No. 2 in F major, Op. 102 (1957)
 

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Discussion Starter · #354 ·
MOZART

#172
Die Zauberflaute (The Magic Flute)
1791


A complex allegorical opera combining elements of fairy-tale quest and symbolic references to Freemasonry, The Magic Flute was Mozart’s last opera to be staged. It forms an apt summation of the incredible variety of his art, with the diverse music allotted to all the different characters and situations displaying his outstanding range of invention and style. Comic and serious by turns this finally triumphant opera is one of the best Mozart works.

A handsome prince, a serpent, and three ladies who produce an enchanted flute with the power to change men’s hearts? Mozart's opera is a bit of a musical pantomime, with some brilliant songs thrown in for good measure: the famously difficult ‘Queen of the Night’ aria, ‘Der Halle Rache kocht in meinem Herzen’, is just one of them.

And, with this piece, Mozart kind of invented the musical.

Yeah, opera had existed for about 200 years, but The Magic Flute wasn’t really an opera. It was a Singspiel — a song-play — which was a genre of theater popular in Germany featuring spoken (rather than sung) dialogue interspersed with songs.

It was also considered a pretty lowbrow art form. Most Singspiel were simple comedies written for lower-class audiences and performed by itinerant actors traveling from village to village.

Until Mozart.

The Magic Flute dragged Singspiel from the town square onto the stages of Austria’s most prestigious theaters, giving the genre legitimacy in the eyes of the upper class and establishing a theatrical tradition that would eventually lead to Broadway.



The Magic Flute (Paris Opera, 2001)

 

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Until Mozart. The Magic Flute dragged Singspiel from the town square onto the stages of Austria’s most prestigious theaters
Is that true though?

"We may assume that Leopold and Wolfgang, while in Vienna, received reports from their friends in Salzburg about the highly successful performance of “Die Hochzeit auf der Alm” in May 1768. The very idea that Wolfgang should write a similar opera (K.50) may have originated in these reports. But how did Mozart come to know the music? For this we have just one clue: in his 1952 biography of Michael Haydn, Hans Jancik mentions that “Die Hochzeit auf der Alm” was also performed in Vienna in 1768." min-ad/06-2/7_Mozartian_Touches77-88.pdf#page=4
"Auf! Es kommt der Fruhling an": watch?v=EsaDuWePEMw
"Lobet ihr Krafte den Schopfer der Welt": watch?v=puANS_Rzv9g
"Gequaltes Herz! Entdecke mir die Wahrheit deiner pein": watch?v=v7lz6nSLzFU
 

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Discussion Starter · #356 · (Edited)
Interesting.

Anecdotal, and possibly true. Also possibly not true. Our records from way back then aren't always the most accurate.

And even if it had been presented, there's no record that the Mozarts attended. But, yes, they COULD have. And little Wolfy was known to "appropriate" music and ideas from elsewhere, often putting his own "spin" on them.

I'm not really familiar with the M Haydn catalog, so when you say they're similar, I'll just have to take your word for it.

And when you say "similar", are you talking about the plot, or the singspiel format?

Of course, is it likely that THE MAGIC FLUTE plagiarized (or perhaps, was influenced by) a minor work like Die Hochzeit auf der Alm two decades after its performance when Mozart was 12 years old? Sure, Mozart was a genius, but this scenario seems a bit of a stretch.

Also, given how many are UNfamiliar with M Haydn and his works, I daresay he had very little impact or influence on the musical world.

That's akin to saying that Rory Storm and the Hurricanes are worthy of more than a footnote because they inspired the Beatles to polish it up a bit.

That said, I'm not really sure WHY M Haydn has been so overlooked, ignored really. His music measures up to Haydn and Mozart quite well. I guess perhaps he just didn't have any real breakaway hits.
 

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Also, given how many are UNfamiliar with M Haydn and his works, I daresay he had very little impact or influence on the musical world.
I'm just saying (as a reply to your post#354) there were singspiels performed in Austrian cultural centers such as Vienna before Mozart's mature ones.
Just cause a composer isn't popular today, it doesn't mean he had little influence in history (although how you subjectively evaluate it is up to you).
"The numerous settings of liturgical texts in German, the secular German part-songs and Lieder, together with his expanding sphere of influence as a teacher of composition in the 1790s, place Michael Haydn in a position of importance in the early history of both German sacred music and German song. One of his students Georg Schinn (1768-1833), left Salzburg in 1808 to take a position in the Munich Hofkapelle, where Michael Haydn's Latin and German sacred music was performed frequently throughout the 19th century." <Michael Haydn and "The Haydn Tradition:" A Study of Attribution, Chronology, and Source Transmission / Dwight C. Blazin / P.28>

Why assume that, if Beethoven was in Haydn's position, Beethoven would have influenced Mozart and Weber (who wrote some of his early dramatic works under Haydn's supervision) the same way Haydn did? No matter how highly you regard Beethoven, he wasn't the one who wrote watch?v=I-TeHK-bVvU in 1769.

"According to contemporary reports, instead of the usual Baroque scenery, in the subsidiary piece the theatre was made up »in the manner of an alpine hut. On one side there was a waterfall, on the other a high mountain cliff. In the morning and evening sunlight [...] one could see the cattle up on the Alpine pastures.« Haydn's Wedding on the Alpine Pasture was no doubt a pioneering work for the Salzburg Theatre. The individual arias and instrumental movements together with the entire singspiel were adapted by Haydn himself and other composers and - as witness numerous copies of the work - were soon in wide distribution in the abbeys of Kremsmünster and Seitenstetten or being taken further afield by the boatsmen who plied the waters of the Salzach river at Laufen." (an excerpt from the program notes for Brunner's recording of Die Hochzeit auf der Alm MH107)

Today, we are shoved in our throats, the dogma; "it was all about Bach, Mozart, Beethoven. They were the ones who did everything (pretty much)". But if we were educated from youth to be more open to free-thinking; for example, "Aumann could have been influential in ways Mozart wasn't", —our way to view classical music history could have been different.
Although Haydn's music hasn't been distributed widely (partly due to the composer not wanting his music printed or published in his lifetime), Schubert happened to have exposure to it during his youth as a chorister in Vienna. Of Mozart, Schubert only said "O immortal Mozart! What countless impressions of a brighter, better life hast thou stamped upon our souls!” and that was it, but Haydn was the composer Schubert specifically said he wanted be like; "I thought to myself, 'May thy pure and peaceful spirit hover around me, dear Haydn! If I can ever become like thee, peaceful and guileless, in all matters none on earth has such deep reverence for thee as I have.' (Sad tears fell from my eyes. . . .)"" .
[Franz Schubert: A Biography, By Henry Frost · 2019 (P. 138)]

It maybe difficult to understand from our point of view today, how Schubert could have admired an obscure late 18th century composer over Mozart, but he did. I don't have to indulge in the wishful thinking "All renowned musical minds have worshipped Mozart over all his contemporaries", "Because Mozart was a musical god". I accept that there can be valid differences of opinion, but no such thing as a dogmatic law of objectivity that condemns anyone as a weirdo for holding them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #358 ·
I'm just saying there were singspiels performed in Austrian cultural centers such as Vienna before Mozart's mature ones.
Just cause a composer isn't popular today, it doesn't mean he had little influence in history (although how you subjectively evaluate it is up to you).
Agreed.

At least M Haydn's stuff is worthy enough to be placed beside Mozart and Haydn.

So . . . there's also Salieri. Also forgotten, but one of the biggest composers of his day. I've listened to a bit of his stuff. Nothing awful about it, if you're into simplicity. I'm sure he was popular BECAUSE of that; very much like pop music of that last half century - the simply stuff seems to be more accessible to the masses.
 

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One more thing; I don't think it's fair to compare K.620 (not K.50) with MH107 especially when Haydn's late works such as
+ Der Schulmeister MH204, Der Englische Patriot MH285, Beschluss-Arie MH295, and especially Die Ährenleserin MH493 (1788), which is said to contain greater boldness of chromatic language, Lied-like qualities of the northern tradition (as opposed to coloratura) than Haydn's earlier works, and 3 instances of homage to Mozart's Don Giovanni.
Ich suche die Natur. Edle Wahrheit! Zeig die Wege, wo ich selbe finden kann. Mach das Mark des Geistes rege, zeig mir deine Tritte an. Lass mich finden, aus was Gründen eine Kunst beträchtlich sei. Weg mit Schmink' und Tandelei! Ich suche die Natur.
I seek Nature. Noble Truth! Show the ways where I can find the same. Stir the spirit's depths; show me your steps. Let me find for what cogent reasons an art merits consideration. Away with decoration and ostentation! I seek Nature.
still haven't been recorded. It's only fair to judge after they're all recorded and we give them equal amount of chance as Mozart's.
Remember, music is subjective.
 

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Discussion Starter · #360 ·
Mozart

#173
Concerto for Flute and Harp, K. 299/297c
1778

Mozart
is on record as not being particularly fond of the flute, but you would never know that from this delightful (and fairly early) work combining the instrument with its frequent Arcadian companion, the harp.

The result is a piece with a sense of never-ending innocence and charm, that also reaches real depth in the slow movement, containing sheer loveliness that would be hard to surpass in any work of its type.

The Concerto was composed in Paris in 1778 for a father-and-daughter pair of amateur instrumentalists – the Duc de Guines and his harpist daughter, Marie-Louise-Philippine, who was studying composition with Mozart while he was in France.

This unusual pairing of instruments came about from a commission by the fantastically named Adrien-Louis de Bonnières, duc de Guînes, who played flute, and wanted a piece to play with this daughter, who played the harp. The piece is completely enchanting – but Mozart himself wasn’t convinced by the instrumentation and never wrote another work for harp.

When Mozart wrote this concerto in 1778, the harp was still being developed. This is the only piece of music he wrote for the instrument, but the writing for each soloist is carefully crafted – it’s something of a showpiece for harpists who can get their fingers around the difficult passages.

Mozart typically did not notate cadenzas for works such as these, and any ideas he may have had for this likely never existed in print. Cadenzas composed by Carl Reinecke (1824-1910) are often used (and sometimes the ones composed by Andre Previn), although many flutists and harpists have chosen to write their own

I. Allegro
II. Andantino
III. Rondeau - Allegro


Here's Julia Rovinsky (Harp) and Guy Eshed (Flute) soloing with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Zubin Mehta in Tel Aviv in 2016

Mozart. Flute and Harp Concerto K299. Zubin Mehta, Julia Rovinsky, Guy Eshed
 
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