The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra - Mozart Symphonies No. 41 & 35

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra - Mozart Symphonies No. 41 & 35

Catalogue Code: 782072

Barcode: 5050457820725

Release Date: 22 Aug 2011

The source of the subtitle, "Jupiter," traditionally associated with Mozart's great last symphony, is not known. At any rate, the composer was not responsible for it. Mozart truly did "launch his lightnings" in the summer of 1788 when he composed his trilogy of final symphonies in the fantastically breif period of about six weeks. There is in the "Jupiter" Symphony Mozart's typically bold and imaginative development of thematic material, chromaticism, and independence of instrumental colouring. The straightforward first movement cast in sonata form, is followed by the profoundly subjective Andante cantabile - one of the composer's lovelist slow creations. The Minuetto is rather quieter and more lyric than are those in certain of the other symphonies. In the famous Finale, which has long remained a source of amazement and inspiration to musicians and audiences alike, Mozart displays what Alfred Einstein terms a "learned" side by the contrapuntal treatment of the musical ideas. This technique, in which two or more simultaneous, rather than successive, melodic lines are employed, was generally considered old-fashioned by Mozart's contemporaries, who concentrated on a homophonic, chordal accompaniment. That Mozart was master of both approaches is strikingly apparent in this Finale which has been incorrectly termed a fugue. It is an unfolding of five distinct themes in a fugal manner, constituting the sonata development of the movement. A simple melody, the first four notes of which appear in several of Mozart's other works, commences the Finale; the other themes enter one by one, take turns in prominence, and are expressed together in various combinations and by different instruments. Then, in a superb coda - a summing up - of twenty measures, they are all joined together at one time. The world would know nothing today about a Haffner family of Salzburg - rich bankers and merchants - if Mozart had not composed two delightful instrumental works to their order: the "Haffner" Serenade (K. 250) in 1776, and the D Major ("Haffner") Symphony (K. 385) in 1782. In July of 1782 Mozart was in Vienna after severing his unpleasant relations experienced in the service of the Archbishop of Salzburg when he received an urgent request from his father, Leopold, for another work for the Haffners. The Serenade had been commissioned for the wedding of Elizabeth, daughter of the Burgomaster of Salzburg; now, Elizabeth's brother Siegmund was to be ennobled, so again music suitable for a grand occasion was desired. The original work contained an introduction, march, and two minuets; hence, the subsequent symphony has been referred to as the "Symphony-serenade." This record coupling of these two masterpieces enables us to note the extent to which Mozart matured during the six years intervening between their dates of composition; and William Steinberg and the Pittsburgh Symphony highlight the best in both works in brilliantly penetrating interpretations.

1. Symphony No. 41 In C Major, K. 551, "Jupiter": I. Allegro Vivace
2. Symphony No. 41 In C Major, K. 551, "Jupiter": II. Andante Cantabile
3. Symphony No. 41 In C Major, K. 551, "Jupiter": III. Minuet
4. Symphony No. 41 In C Major, K. 551, "Jupiter": IV. Finale
5. Symphony No. 35 In D Major, K. 385, "Haffner": I. Allegro Con Spirito
6. Symphony No. 35 In D Major, K. 385, "Haffner": II. Andante
7. Symphony No. 35 In D Major, K. 385, "Haffner": III. Minuet
8. Symphony No. 35 In D Major, K. 385, "Haffner": IV. Presto