Conjured superbly

Conjured superbly

Mozart himself made these chamber adaptations of the first three piano concertos he composed soon after settling in Vienna in 1781 as a freelance composer-pianist. In each of them, the combination of an orchestral ‘feel’ with string-quartet reality requires a kind of circle-squaring from its performers that can be difficult to bring off – and is specially memorable when it succeeds to the wonderful degree that it does here.

“The Wihan Quartet’s collective sound has a rounded fullness and mellow, tawny-brown colouring which, besides being handsome in itself, also means that they never have to force any kind of would-be orchestral effect.”

The players’ collective delivery of the A major Concerto, K414, features more in the way of little tempo adjustments within each movement, but they always seem to work; and the grander, C major manner of K415 requires an implied expansion of the overall sound that’s conjured superbly.

See also