Magazine article Gramophone

Mozart: 'Piano Sonatas, Vol 2'

Magazine article Gramophone

Mozart: 'Piano Sonatas, Vol 2'

Article excerpt

Mozart

'Piano Sonatas, Vol 2'

Piano Sonatas--No 7, K309; No 8, K310; No 9, K311. Rondo, K511

Peter Donohoe pf

Somm Celeste (F) SOMMCD0198 (6V * DDD)

The second instalment of Peter Donohoe's Mozart survey was recorded as recently as this March. He and Somm's recording team return to the Birmingham Conservatoire and to a Bechstein piano that sounds ideal in this music--beautifully sonorous but without the brashness a Steinway might have brought to it. The sonatas are the trilogy composed during Mozart's ill-fated trip of 1777-78 via Mannheim to Paris, during which the gradual break from his father--both emotionally and artistically--became more inevitable, exacerbated by his mother's death in July 1778.

Donohoe takes each work at face value, keeping shifts of tempo and impromptu ornamentation to a minimum but still playing with the sensitivity that was palpable in Vol 1 (4/19). Nos 7 and 9 don't enjoy the profile of the A minor Sonata, No 8, but Donohoe is alive to the almost symphonic dimension of the writing in the outer movements of each. …

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