Leclair: Sonatas for Two Violins, etc.

Leclair: Sonatas for Two Violins, etc.

by Pinchas Zukerman



Listening to these two Mozart duos for violin and viola, a listener's initial assessment may be that these works -- though charming, elegant, and graceful in every sense of the words -- are not all-together Mozartian in their occasional lack of depth and profundity and somewhat angular transitions. What we have here, however, is Mozart deliberately trying not to write like himself. Rather, he was attempting to imitate the compositional style of Michael Haydn -- a close friend of Mozart who had fallen ill and needed Mozart's help to complete a commission. In this light, these compositions are delightfully brilliant and show another of Mozart's countless strengths -- that of imitation. This album, recorded in 1991, features violinist Itzhak Perlman and violist Pinchas Zukerman and harkens back to the glory days of their careers when they were both concentrating on performing rather than conducting. Their collaboration gives the impression of total spontaneity, a true chamber music dialogue in which both artists demonstrate true and palpable joy in performing. It's a shame that Perlman and Zukerman did not, however, record the other four duos of the set that were actually composed by Michael Haydn for listeners to compare to Mozart's brilliant imitative skills. Rather, a sonata for violin duo by Jean-Marie Leclair is tacked on to the end of the album. Regrettably, this addition sounds like little more than an afterthought designed to fill extra space on the album and is not as enjoyable as the works by either Mozart or Haydn.

Product Details

Release Date: 10/04/1991
Label: Rca
UPC: 0090266073528
catalogNumber: 60735


  1. Duo for violin & viola No. 1 in G major, K. 423

    1. Allegro  (06:54)
    2. Adagio  (04:10)
    3. Rondeau, Allegro  (05:47)
  2. Duo for violin & viola No. 2 in B flat major, K. 424

    1. Adagio, Allegro  (08:22)
    2. Andante cantabile  (03:47)
    3. Theme with 6 Variations, Andante grazioso  (08:58)
  3. Sonatas (6) for 2 violins (or viols), Op. 3: No 4, in F

    1. No 4, in F  (02:57)
    2. No 4, in F  (04:08)
    3. No 4, in F  (02:50)

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