Donald Macleod goes in search of Mozart the keyboard player, a young man who arrived in Vienna in 1781 and whose brilliance as performer, composer and impresario turned a city upside down in what was to become one of the most remarkable decades in musical history.
12 Variations on Ah, vous dirai-je, Maman, K265 (excerpt)
András Schiff (piano)
Concerto for Two Pianos No 10 in E flat, K365 (finale)
Alfred Brendel, Imogen Cooper (piano)
Neville Marriner (conductor)
Sonata for Two Pianos K448 (2nd movement)
Ingrid Haebler, Ludwig Hoffman (piano)
Fantasia in Dm, K397
Emil Gilels (piano)
Piano Concerto No 12 in A, K414
Howard Shelley (piano)
London Mozart Players.
In 1784 Mozart was at the height of his powers.
He was newly wed and happy, he composed a spectacular series of six Piano Concertos, and one of the greatest chamber works in the entire repertoire.
Donald Macleod tells the story of this annus mirabilis.
Piano Concerto No 14 in E flat, K449
Malcolm Bilson (fortepiano)
English Baroque Soloists
John Eliot Gardiner (director)
Quintet for Piano and Winds in E flat, K452
Murray Perahia (piano)
Neil Black (oboe)
Thea King (clarinet)
Anthony Halstead (horn)
Graham Sheen (bassoon)
Piano Concerto No 15 in B flat, K450 (finale)
Robert Levin (fortepiano)
Academy of Ancient Music
Christopher Hogwood (conductor).
Nothing lasts for ever, not even for Mozart.
As 1784 turned to 1785, and as his astonishingly successful year of subscription concerts faded into the memory, Mozart's career took what the Viennese public saw as a couple of faltering steps.
Donald Macleod weighs up the evidence.
Piano Sonata in Cm, K457
Mitsuko Uchida (piano)
Piano Concerto No 18 in B flat, K456 (slow movement)
Richard Goode (piano)
Orpheus Chamber Orchestra
Piano Quartet in Gm, K478
Monica Hugget (violin)
Alison McGillivray (cello)
Gary Gooper (fortepiano).
Donald Macleod's survey of Mozart's relationship with the piano focuses on some of the works that the composer wrote for - and performed with - friends and musical colleagues during his Viennese decade.
Sonata for Violin and Piano in B flat, K454
Frank Peter Zimmermann (violin)
Alexander Lonquich (piano)
Ch'io mi scordi di te, K505
Cecilia Bartoli (mezzo soprano)
András Schiff (fortepiano)
Vienna Chamber Orchestra
Gyorgy Fischer (conductor)
Trio in E flat, K498, Kegelstatt for Piano, Clarinet, and Viola
Sabine Meyer (clarinet)
Tabea Zimmermann (viola)
Hartmut Höll (piano)
Mozart the Keyboard Player
The tragic decline of Mozart's last years is well documented, but despite circumstances that would have crushed most lesser mortals, works of sublime beauty continued to flow from his pen.
Donald Macleod enjoys some of Mozart's exquisite keyboard works of this final period.
Der Frühling, K597 (excerpt)
Barbara Bonney (soprano)
Geoffrey Parsons (piano)
Piano Trio No 5 in E, K542
Beaux Arts Trio
Menahem Pressler; Isidor Cohen; Bernard Greenhouse
Sehnsucht nach dem Frühling, K596
Piano Concerto No 27 in B flat, K595
Alfred Brendel (piano)
Neville Marriner (conductor).