Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) - Complete Variations
I.Six variations sur lâ€™air â€˜â€™Salve tu Domineâ€™â€™ KV 398
extrait de lâ€™opÃ©ra â€˜â€™Les Philosophes imaginairesâ€™â€™ de Paisiello (00:00)
II.Neuf variations sur un menuet de Duport KV 573 (06:46)
III.Douze variations sur la romance â€˜â€™Je suis Lindorâ€™â€™ KV 354
extrait du â€˜â€™Berbier de SÃ©villeâ€™â€™ dâ€™Antoine-Laurent Baudron (21:10)
IV.Douze variations sur la chanson franÃ§aise â€˜â€™La belle FranÃ§oiseâ€™â€™ KV 353 (39:05)
V.Neuf variations sur lâ€™ariette â€˜â€™Lison dormaitâ€™â€™ KV264
extrait de lâ€™opÃ©ra-comique â€˜â€™Julieâ€™â€™ de DezÃ¨de (53:01)
VI.Six variations sur un Allegretto KV 54 (1:09:08)
VII.Huit variations sur â€˜â€™Ein Weib ist das herrlichste Dingâ€™â€™ KV 613 (1:16:33)
extrait du singspiel â€˜â€™Der dumme GÃ¤rtnerâ€™â€™ de Schack ou Gerl
VIII.Douze variations sur â€˜â€™Ah, vous dirai-je mamanâ€™â€™ KV 265 (1:33:03)
IX.Dix variations sur lâ€™ariette â€˜â€™Unser dummer PÃ¶bel meintâ€™â€™ KV 455 (1:47:32)
extrait des PÃ¨lerins de la Mecque
X.Huit variations sur lâ€™air â€˜â€™Come un agnelloâ€™â€™ KV 460 (2:01:37)
XI.Six variations sur un thÃ¨me du Quintette avec clarinette KV581 (2:15:16)
XII.Huit variations sur le chant hollandais KV 24
â€˜â€™Laat ons juichen, Batavierenâ€™â€™ de Graaf (2:25:56)
XIII.Huit variations sur le choeur â€˜â€™Dieu dâ€™amourâ€™â€™ KV 352
extrait de lâ€™opÃ©ra-comique â€˜â€™Les Mariages Samnitesâ€™â€™ de GrÃ©try (2:32:11)
XIV.Douze variations sur un menuet de Johann Christian Fischer KV 179 (2:45:27)
XV.Six variations sur â€˜â€™Mio caro Adoneâ€™â€™ KV 180
extrait de lâ€™opÃ©ra â€˜â€™La fiera di Veniziaâ€™â€™ de Salieri (3:06:26)
XVI.Sept variations sur le chant hollandais â€˜â€™Willem von Nassauâ€™â€™ KV 25 (3:16:22)
XVII.Douze variations sur un allegretto KV 500 (3:23:08)
Piano : Walter Chodack
StÃ©rÃ©o recording in 1989, at Paris
New Mastering in 2018 by AB for CMRR
The child, the young man, the man alone is seated at the keyboard. Gathered around the instrument, Society expects him to entertain, to please it. The Musician must give proof of his talent as a virtuoso and, if possible, demonstrate at the same time that he also possesses talent as an improviser, but only within a given framework, always observing the courtesies by never imposing himself beyond measure, giving pleasure to everyone by embellishing and varying a familiar tune - someone elseâ€™s tune. He is not expected do have an idea of his own ; the academic exercise consists in appropriating another musicianâ€™s idea and exploiting it according to well defined canons.
From the time he began to celebrate the music of other composers in his variations, Mozartâ€™s fifteen-odd sets of variations present us with a broad panorama of the most popular repertoire among European audiences and of their musical preferences, because only familiar and recognisable themes and tunes were used. National celebrations in the Netherlands, with themes taken from the anniversary festival music for William of Nassau, and popular Dutch music for K24 and K25 ; French songs (Ah vous dirai-je, maman K265 ; La Belle FranÃ§oise K353 ; Lison dormait K264 ; Je suis Lindor K354). And numerous composers in vogue at the time : Gluck K555, GrÃ©try K352, Duport K573, Fischer K179, Salieri K180, Sarti K460, Paisiello K398, but so few on his own themes K500, K581.
Variations are a game, a game of memory involving the remembering of the theme and of the tune in its exploitation in which it is still recognized, but transformed in the course of the series (which contains six, never fewer, to twelve variations). A game of virtuosity, too, in inventing original ideas and ornaments around the given theme ; a game of velocity in all the transformations authorized by the conventions (semiquavers, demisemiquavers, triplets and trills) ; and a game of changing the mood by altering the tempi, and the obligatory variation in a minor key. In this sense variations, often composed on the spur of the moment on a specific occasion, represent a veritable work of improvisation. But that, too, is part of the pleasure of the game.
Although Mozart did not attain to the level of appropriation-transformation in the genre that Beethoven was to achieve in the Diabelli Variations - which represent an extreme degree of sophistication and genius in this precise form and its transfiguration - Mozartâ€™s piano variations must not be regarded as a minor genre in his output. Quite the contrary, they bear witness to the spontaneity of his inspiration when they were the outcome of a playful investigation and as such they teach us a great deal about the composer. The full range of the freedom of Mozartâ€™s creative procedure is laid before us, in which is all contained the development of a genre : issuing from the most galant of traditions, the variation escapes from its confined, conventional acceptation and is raised to a new level of maturity. Brigitte Massin
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart PLAYLIST (reference recordings) https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL3UZpQL9LIxMe6H3Sfn2lvPVFzrvhhPO7
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