Notes and Editorial Reviews
Mordecai Shehori’s tempo and articulation in the B flat
major Sonata are indices of his judicious, textually aware and
mature appreciation of Mozart’s demands. At a tempo that
is cohered with considered skill, with instincts that apply
rubati with perceptive discipline, and with a crisp and tonally
congruent auditory sense, we are assured of an exemplary traversal.
His slow movement attests to a sure but unostentatious cultivation
of colour, to phrasing that is natural, pliant - but not indulgent
- and with a finely judged transition to the B section. His
articulation in the finale is crisp, and with a healthy extroversion
The attractive qualities of the music-making are enhanced by
Shehori’s examination of the Urtexts of these works. Shehori’s
principal bête noir is the indiscriminate and automatic
use of staccati the better to imitate a fortepiano. His priority
is to stress the singing quality of Mozart’s inspiration,
the vocalised impress of so much of the writing. These are some
of the underlying principles at work in Shehori’s playing
- his booklet notes go into some detail as to his precepts and
his position on the matter and are well worth reading.
Putting precepts into practice is something at which he is rather
good. The companion sonata is the C minor K457 and he again
brings to it notable qualities. He is more pliant than some
in the opening, less chordally emphatic, and not as overtly
dramatic. Instead he cultivates a perceptive balance between
the overt and the measured, reserving a greater weight and strata
of depth for the slow movement, which he vests with considerable
intimacy and allure.
As well as these profound human and singing qualities, one finds
that throughout Shehori’s sense of the masculine and feminine
elements in the music-making are held in equipoise. So, to take
the C minor Fantasie as an example, he resists the temptation
to assert the music’s rhetorical aspects in favour of
the subtle deployment of colour and appropriate dynamics. He
doesn’t lash out, but controls with eloquence and calibration.
Indeed throughout he plays with fine discrimination, though
never at the expense of genuinely extrovert dynamism.
This fine selection also shows a well balanced programmatic
mind at work with three works in C minor, including the grandly
played Fantasie in C Minor, K 396, at its heart. Finely recorded
into the bargain as well.
-- Jonathan Woolf, MusicWeb International Read less
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