ALBUM TITLE: Mozart: Piano Concertos
WORKS: Piano Concertos: No. 9 in E flat, K271 (Jeunehomme); No. 25 in C, K503; Rondo in A, K386
PERFORMER: Pascal Rogé (piano); Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra/Raymond Leppard
CATALOGUE NO: 4013
Raymond Leppard moulds the opening tutti of K271 with energy and precision, and a sense of timing which is shared by Pascal Rogé. They have obviously worked to make sure that they turn all the corners at the same speed and at the same time, and the result is very refreshing. The recording, on the dry side and slightly close on the piano, suits this movement, but is too analytical for the tragic central Andantino, where the pulsing strings need more warmth and aura around them, meticulous though Leppard’s phrasing is. But the finale is perfectly paced, with the central minuet hitting the right tempo and mood.
Although it comes from only nine years later, K503 is a work of Mozart’s maturity, sharing not only the key of the Jupiter Symphony, but also something of its sonority and compositional authority. That’s well captured by Leppard and the orchestra, and Rogé finds a greater depth of tone here as well. The first movement has real majesty and coherence in its phrasing and dynamic shaping. In many ways these are old-fashioned performances, but they never lose sight of Mozart’s extraordinary genius. Martin Cotton