Mozart: Violin Concertos Nos 3, 4 & 5 / Kraggerud, Norwegian Chamber Orchestra
Mozart wrote his Violin Concertos in 1775 while still living in his home town of Salzburg and in service to Prince-Archbishop Hieronymus Colloredo. Mozart had already toured internationally and found his parochial environment restricting, but as ever he rose above circumstances to create sublime and thrillingly unconventional masterpieces filled with wit and elegant charm. The finely sustained melodic expression of each concerto’s slow center provides the perfect foil for inventive sparkle in outer movements that include a cheeky reference to the opera Il re pastore in K.216 to an exotic ‘Turkish’ moment in the finale of K. 219.
In the Fourth Concerto, there’s a lovely singing character to the central Andante, Kraggerud producing a variety of tone which matches the changing intensity of the line. Here, as in all the concertos, he plays his own cadenzas, which are stylish in the best sense, and show off his technique.
– BBC Music Magazine
The Norwegian Chamber Orchestra has something of a reputation for working harmoniously with guest soloist-directors, not least among them Leif Ove Andsnes in concertos by Mozart and Haydn. Their strength lies in the collaborative approach dictated by their modest dimensions and conductorless set-up. Those discs with Andsnes were conspicuously successful, both artistically and critically, and this new project with Henning Kraggerud is no less winning. While these are brisk, no-nonsense performances after the contemporary fashion, the thinking that underpins their shaping right from the very beginning makes these readings of the Third, Fourth and Fifth concertos worth returning to.
Catalog Number: 8573513
Composer: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Orchestra/Ensemble: Norwegian Chamber Orchestra
Performer: Henning Kraggerud