This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
Notes and Editorial Reviews
Here is an attractive programme and a well-filled disc which finds room for four sonatas. Those in G major (K301, that is) and E minor are unconventional in having just two movements but work well as structures; neither has a slow movement as such, but in both works the finale balances the first movement satisfactorily; in fact, Mozart uses a through-composed variation form (though not so-called) in the case of K301 and, for K304, a rather lengthy, sombre and searching minuet with a poignant major-mode trio. (K379 has a 'double' first movement, Adagio-Allegro, and then a set of variations.)
Maria Joao Pires is an established Mozartian who has recorded all the piano sonatas twice, and, although less familiar in this repertory,
Augustin Dumay has recorded a couple of the violin concertos. They are well matched, I feel, with Dumay's naturally warm sound and expansive approach tempered to advantage by Pires's slightly crisper and more classical style. One gets a sense of this aspect of the partnership at the very outset of the G major Sonata, K301, where the violinist leans on his up-beat (anacrusis) entry with the first subject—this is again noticeable at the start of the exposition repeat—and the pianist then establishes a firm pulse. (But in fact, Pires does the same when she introduces the melody in the minuet of the E minor Sonata.) Similarly, Pires's simple statement of the gentle E major melody in the second movement of K304 is echoed by Dumay more warmly and flexibly, and this seems to me convincing as dialogue.
Devotees of repeats will be glad that both halves of the first movements of K301 and K304 (as well as the Allegro section of the first movement in K379) are played twice. Yet the artists don't play the corresponding repeat in the first movement in the B flat major Sonata: what is the reasoning here? Still, this is fine, intelligent playing, and although we may fail to find anything revelatory about it either as sound or in interpretation, it is safe to say that this kind of music is best played with a certain directness, and make no mistake, there is no lack of finesse, while the phrasing of the two players is beautifully matched. Try the finale of K379 to hear them at their very best. The recording is clear yet warm, matching the playing itself.
-- Christopher Headington, Gramophone [2/1992]
Works on This Recording
Sonata for Piano and Violin in G, K.301: 1. Allegro con spirito
Sonata For Piano And Violin In G, K.301: 2. Allegro
Sonata For Piano And Violin In E Minor, K.304: 1. Allegro
Sonata for Piano and Violin in E minor, K.304: 2. Tempo di minuetto
Sonata for Piano and Violin in B flat, K.378: 1. Allegro moderato
Sonata for Piano and Violin in B flat, K.378: 2. Andantino sostenuto e cantabile
Sonata For Piano And Violin In B Flat, K.378: 3. Rondo (Allegro)
Sonata for Piano and Violin in G, K.379: 1. Adagio - Allegro
Sonata for Piano and Violin in G, K.379: 2. Thema. Andantino cantabile - Var.I-V -Allegretto
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