No, not another Mozart piano concerto disc! No indeed, for this pioneering recording gives us intimate, almost domestic versions of three of the composer’s masterpieces, versions that have scarcely been played, let alone set to disc, in the modern concert era. Moreover they give us the opportunity to hear Susan Tomes show her mettle in strong light as concerto soloist—and bring to a wider repertoire the distinct communicative magic that has made her one of the foremost chamber pianists of today.
Mozart retains from the homogeneity of the strings a sense of intricacy and allure, as well conjuring the glance-exchanging thrill of chamber-music-making, all of which heightens the piquancy of the dialogue and confrontation between piano and band, while setting the rich sonorities of the piano into greater relief.
You thought you knew these wonderful, innovative and energetic pieces, but hear afresh and think again!
'These works have been recorded in chamber form before, but this time the result is lighter and more intimate than in previous versions, helped by a clear, dry recording acoustic. There are few recording pianists to match Susan Tomes for clarity of articulation, and here she leads sparkling performances. Speeds are relatively fast, with slow movements kept moving to bring out their soaring lyricism' (The Guardian)
'Light and air is everywhere; the transparency of the sound remains a constant delight ... a sense of musicians bouncing their performances off each other.... These are above all genial renditions. Mozart himself never aimed at plumbing depths - he told his father the concertos were "very brilliant" and "fell agreeably on the ear" - so Tomes's fingerwork, always light and precise, would appear to be made to measure ... this disc offers major pleasures and refreshment' (The Times)
'Susan Tomes's playing has all the qualities for which Mozart himself was renowned: delicacy, agility, neatness, expressive eloquence. In close creative dialogue with the Gaudier Ensemble she brings limpid, subtly coloured tone to the lyrical melodies, makes Mozart's passagework dance and sparkle, and relishes opportunities for sly and witty timing. Crucially, too, in Mozart, she knows when to be simple. A delightful disc' (The Daily Telegraph)
'Chamber music at its best - unified, warm, intimate' (American Record Guide)
Klavierkonzerte / Konzerte für Klavier(e) und Orchester Nr. 1-27: Nr. 11 (KV 413 F-dur, a quattro)
1. Satz: Allegro
2. Satz: Larghetto
3. Satz: Tempo di Minuetto
Klavierkonzerte / Konzerte für Klavier(e) und Orchester Nr. 1-27: Nr. 12 (KV 414 (385p) A-dur, a quattro)
1. Satz: Allegro
2. Satz: Andante
3. Satz: Allegretto
Klavierkonzerte / Konzerte für Klavier(e) und Orchester Nr. 1-27: Nr. 13 (KV 415 C-dur, a quattro)