Home | Reviews | Articles | Festivals | Competitions | Other | Contact Us

Margarethe Danzi & W A Mozart
Sonatas & Variations for Fortepiano & Violin

DANZI Three Sonatas for Fortepiano with Violin Obligato - Sonata I in E flat major, Sonata II in B flat major, Sonata III in E major ;
MOZART Six variations on an Andantino 'Hélas, j'ai perdu mon amant' in G minor, KV 360 (374b)

Vaughan Schlepp, fortepiano; Antoinette Lohmann, violin

Fineline Classical - FL72405

This CD of rarities has considerable attractions, and its creation was clearly a labour of love and scholarship - and pleasantly quirky; q.v. photo of the artists !

First, and finally most important, these are fine, idiomatic HIP renderings of, albeit minor, works of the late 18th C., on two instruments of the period (the fortepiano a fine Stein/McNulty copy), the recording perfectly balanced and natural sounding.

The music comes from the time when the keyboard still has primacy. It is fairly undemanding music, and you would not do it a huge disservice if you were to browse the 20 or so pages of historical and social background whilst listening (as I am enjoying listening whilst typing this review... was this music listened to in rapt attentive silence in its time, I doubt?).

We are told of complex ramifications in the Mozart family life, and as much as known about 'Gretl', a short-lived pupil of Leopold Mozart (whose pedagogical methods are described), her husband to be, Franz Danzi, and their entourage.

Margarethe was much in demand as a singer and she probably composed but little after her marriage and before her early death at 32, but these sonatas show a developed compositional skill, 'harmonically more advanced' than her female counterparts of the day, 'the idiom not cliché but individual' (Antoinette Lohmann). The Mozart item is an extensive set of variations, its theme a song about lost love, which returns at the end 'sounding even more tragic than it did the first time'.

The presentation is delectable and makes me want to hear the pair's earlier recording of music by J.M.Kraus (FL72404).

Peter Grahame Woolf