Mozart: Violin Sonata in D, K306; Violin Sonata in E flat, K380; Violin Sonata in B flat, K454

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COMPOSERS: Mozart
LABELS: Opus
WORKS: Violin Sonata in D, K306; Violin Sonata in E flat, K380; Violin Sonata in B flat, K454
PERFORMER: Fabio Biondi (violin) Olga Tverskaya (fortepiano)
CATALOGUE NO: 111 OPS 30-216
We tend to think of the violin sonata in the context of Beethoven’s great concertante works such as the Kreutzer Sonata, in which the instruments are equally matched, often in grand statements. That disguises the form’s humble Classical origins as a work for keyboard with optional violin accompaniment. The three sonatas on this disc by violinist Fabio Biondi and pianist Olga Tverskaya map out the journey between the two stages, and show the importance of Mozartrole in developing the form. In the sonatas K306 and K380 sometimes the piano is still semi-autonomous and the violin decorative, whereas in the larger-scale B flat Sonata, K454 – one of Mozart’s final and most accomplished exercises in the form – the instruments alternately spark off each other and fuse in confident harmonic and contrapuntal displays. Tverskaya and Biondi play on period instruments, but there is little sense of overbearing dogma. The fortepiano can seem rather intractable in the intimate passages, but Tverskaya is a stylish player, and the duo’s robust approach and clean sounds are especially effective in the brilliant finales – the rondo from K380, with its hunting-horn theme, is particularly striking. William Humphreys-Jones

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