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Mozart: Piano Concertos No. 23, K488 & No.24, K491 CD
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"We still had the thrill of Uchida, embodying Mozart's recollections of joy and sorrow with dancing subtlety and love." -- The Times, London
Top Customer Reviews
One example of this is in the first movement cadenza of the c minor concerto. Uchida's earlier version's cadenza is a minor masterpiece of Mozart-style piano writing and playing, and is quite exciting, but her new cadenza for the same movement is really not on the same level. It's certainly interesting, but it doesn't do anything as exciting as the earlier one. Perhaps it's a touch more Romantic, and so is the entire performance, with a much larger ensemble than either Tate, with the English Chamber Orch., or the great George Szell's classic account on Sony with Robert Cassadesues, which lists the orchestra as consisting of "members of The Cleveland Orchestra." This is massive and monumental Mozart on a large scale rather than intimate and classical. The playing (especially of the winds) is, naturally, excellent, but the size of the band is almost too big for this piece, and I find the playing a bit too smoothed over (Romantic) for Mozart. Tate got the accents better in his more striking realization for Uchida's earlier version.
There is also very fine wind playing here in the episodes of the slow movement (as there is in their earlier recording with Szell)and the chamber music textures deliver some wonderful give and take between instrumental choirs (winds and strings) and between winds and piano.Read more ›
These two concertos are often thought of as a good contrasting pair, ideal for a live concert programme (such as that from which this recording is taken), but Uchida suggests that this that these characterisations are superficial and in particular undermines the supposed geniality of K488, reminding us that they were composed within a few weeks of each other in March 1786, while Mozart was simultaneously working on "The Marriage of Figaro".Read more ›
Mozart's concerto writing reaches a climax in the Piano Concerto in C minor, K.491 (1786).
Uchida, now somewhat older and all the wiser handles the virtuosic demands this kind of music-making imposes with exceptional stylistic command and supreme concentration throughout. In K.491 performed before K.488,is polished as one may expect it to be, but Uchida further renders an allure and spontaneity that are absolute joy. As well, details of scoring in the orchestral expositions of the first movements rarely receive such interest in voicing and characterised definition. In a Mozart concerto one feels that the pianist behaves like a character in an opera. This comes from a dramatization between soloist and orchestra. We wait for the entry of the soloist from the beginning of the orchestral Exposition.
Uchida does not let us down in this respect either. Simply judge her first entry in this concerto's solo theme: there is no other more difficult to manage. Uchida provides the range, the control and the rhetoric necessary to pull it off. Another difficult challenge is overcome by Uchida in this first movement by providing us with an impressive cadenza. Mozart is always demanding, not physically, but in concentrating to find the right character and atmosphere. It becomes an outstanding occurrence of this movement, to be returned to again and again.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Mitsuko Uchida and the Cleveland Orchestra is an unbeatable partnership when it comes to Mozart's piano concertos. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Peter T. Brown
GREAT CD, MISS UCHIDA AND THE CLEVELAND ORCH. MAKES VERY GOOD RECORDING.Published 14 months ago by jorge ransom h.
Uchida manages to blend the piano and the orchestra in such a way that you feel that they are having a lively conversationPublished on August 26, 2013 by Alan M Eddington
My affair with the piano began when I was about five years old and started taking piano lessons. When the performer is a world-class pianist, as Mitsuko Uchida is, not loving the... Read morePublished on December 22, 2012 by Amy Ullrich
For several years now, distinguished pianist Mitsuko Uchida has developed a close collaboration with the Cleveland Orchestra in performing Mozart concertos. Read morePublished on January 1, 2012 by P. Adrian
Uchida's recordings of the Mozart sonatas are wonderfully in character with the time and the composer. Read morePublished on April 1, 2011 by Douglas Thorpe
Mitsuko Uchida, already one of the world's leading Mozart interpreters, outdoes herself in this recording, especially in #24. Read morePublished on June 5, 2010 by Max F. Rosenberg MD