WORKS: Marches in D, K335/1 & 2; Serenade No. 9, K320 (Posthorn); Symphony No. 32 in G, K318
PERFORMER: Christoph Brandt-Lindenbaum (posthorn); Cappella Coloniensis/Joshua Rifkin
CATALOGUE NO: 10 728
The Posthorn Serenade has come a long way since I produced the first recording of it in Vienna 46 years ago – a way materially assisted by some excellent LPs including Böhm, Szell and, on period instruments, Bruno Weil (Mozart’s version as a symphony). This new recording is spirited, well-performed and well-recorded (though I found the D – not the A – kettledrum over-reverberant in the latter part of the Serenade, and the tempo in the Rondeau’s second part seemed unsteady).
The CD’s documentation is lamentable: no identification of the cover picture (a view of Salzburg’s riding school) nor the Mozart portrait (Barbara Krafft); nor that we are dealing with a period orchestra; nor that the Symphony K318 is recorded in its original Salzburg orchestration, without trumpets and timpani, the former a later addition by Mozart, the latter contemporary but possibly not by the composer; nor are the musicians and their instruments identified. And in the notes, the statement that K318 is ‘the only large-scale orchestral work to have been printed in [Mozart’s] lifetime’ is quite false – Symphonies K297 (Paris), K319 and K385 (Haffner) were all issued before 1791, not to speak of other works. I was a little sorry to lose the trumpets in K318 and it is probable that Mozart’s kettledrum player improvised a part when the work was first given at Salzburg in 1779. HC Robbins Landon