"Observations on the First Phase of Mozart’s ‘Haydn’ Quartets"

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Publication Date: 
February, 2005

Words About Mozart is published as a tribute to the late Stanley Sadie, musicologist, critic and editor of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Of the eleven essays presented here, three focus on compositional matters: Julian Rushton examines the dramatic meaning of a recurring motif in Idomeneo; Elaine Sisman sifts through the facts surrounding the genesis of Mozart's 'Haydn' quartets; and Simon Keefe matches up pairs of piano sonatas and concertos on the basis of their common compositional features. Cliff Eisen considers some problems of performing practice posed by the solo keyboard parts in Mozart's concertos, and Robert Philip surveys tempo fluctuations in a selection of historical recordings. Felicity Baker's detailed analysis of aspects of the Don Giovanni libretto is a welcome contribution from the field of literary criticism. Three studies offer new archival research: Neal Zaslaw uncovers the background to one of Mozart's nonsense compositions; Dorothea Link examines the Viennese Hofkapelle and creates a new context for understanding Mozart's court appointment; and Theodore Albrecht proposes a candidate for Mozart's Zauberflötist. Christina Bashford considers an aspect of Mozart reception in 19th-century England connected with John Ella, and Peter Branscombe presents a comprehensive overview of research published since the bicentenary in 1991. The volume includes a full bibliography of Stanley Sadie's publications and broadcasts.

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