Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) – Piano Concertos nºs 19 & 23 – Grimaud, Mojca Erdmann, Kammerorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks

4779455A beleza estonteante da francesa Hélène Grimaud na capa deste belíssimo CD me deixou sem palavras, por isso, sem mais para o momento, trago para os senhores o texto abaixo, que está no site da Deutsche Grammophon. Ouçam o disco, leiam o texto e tirem suas conclusões. Eu já tirei as minhas conclusões.

“Masks and magic

The Adagio from the Piano Concerto in A major K. 488 is one of Mozart’s most magically inspired movements and for Hélène Grimaud it is possibly the most sublime movement that he ever wrote for the keyboard: “Even if this movement were all we had, that would be enough.” It must remain an open question whether Mozart regarded the key of F sharp minor – an extremely unusual one for him – in the same way as his contemporary Daniel Schubart, who defined it as “a dark key that tears at passion as a vicious dog tears at your clothing”. But even if there is no doubt that Mozart was repeatedly inclined to conceal his true feelings behind a mask, Hélène Grimaud is convinced that he did not do so here in this profound, inward and heartfelt movement.

Perhaps this explains why she allows herself so much time in this unique Adagio, which she plays more slowly than almost all of her other colleagues, even though she insists that she chose this tempo on the basis of her experience in the concert hall. “It happened to be so in that concert, with that acoustic. The return of the sound is what dictates when you play the next note; tempi are always connected with the venue. That said, a movement like this isn’t composed accidentally. Philosophically speaking, if you don’t go to the limit in this movement, when are you going to?” This does not alter the fact that she has an entirely clear and down-to-earth idea of Mozart. Concepts such as otherworldly, angelic music are highly suspect in her eyes: “Mozart was possessed. This idea that the music is from another world, from above, and that it’s the music of an angel is simply not the case. It’s very much the music of a man. If you read his letters, you don’t have to look very far to figure out what Mozart was about. This element of passion which gives sense to our existence is always there with him.”

In Hélène Grimaud’s view, Mozart may sometimes play with masks, but not in movements such as the Adagio from the A major Piano Concerto. Rather she identifies this mask-wearing Mozart in other passages that seem cheerful and relatively carefree: “I often feel that this effervescent, supposedly happy expression is sometimes bordering on hysteria, there’s something slightly unstable there.” She hears moments like these in the outer movements of the A major Concerto and in the finale of the F major Concerto K. 459. True, this movement is “very virtuosic, alive and effervescent. But this manic energy is almost an escape into a trance: it is not only joy, it is not only happiness.”

What makes Mozart’s music so special for Hélène Grimaud is its grace and utter weightlessness: “You have depth but without any sort of weight. That’s really what sets him apart from many others.” But this is precisely why it is not easy to strike the right note with Mozart. You have to play this music as you would in your childhood, when you could approach it in an altogether straightforward and self-evident way and everything flowed quite naturally: “It’s challenging to get back to this purity of expression.” The second movement of the F major Concerto is a fine example of this: “It is so disarming in its simplicity, but it has a couple of moments which are just arresting; for example, when it goes into the minor tonality it is absolutely breathtaking.”

Hélène Grimaud is always receptive to the unusual, and it was, of course, her idea to complement the two piano concertos from her Munich concert not with a third concerto but with Ch’io mi scordi di te? – Non temer, amato bene K. 505. This is a work that she has loved for many years: “It’s a gem, a wonderful piece. The part for soprano is just fantastic, the relationship between the soprano, the orchestra and the piano is just gorgeous. It’s like liquid gold, the piano’s interventions going from something to do with silk to something to do with lace. Again, there’s this wonderful weightlessness.”

There is no doubt that this is one of the most beautiful arias that Mozart ever wrote. The way he sets up a relationship between voice and piano and allows each to react to the other is unique in the whole of his output. One is almost tempted to hear in it a secret declaration of his love for Nancy Storace, his first Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro and the singer for whom he wrote this scena and rondo. He himself played the keyboard at the first performance in 1787. Hélène Grimaud is disinclined to interpret it in such a directly autobiographical way: “A declaration of love with sounds instead of words. Of course there’s the text, which gives you a pretty clear indication of what’s going on, but for me it’s always secondary. The music has to shed light on its own structure and emotional content. If you stick to any sort of scenario and text, it in fact reduces the music. You can imagine all sorts of things: you can imagine that the piano is the male and the voice is the female – or in reverse. At the end, love still triumphs even amid this resignation. And even in that perspective of a broken heart, love is still stronger – so it’s a beautiful message above all.”

P.S. 1 Dentre as trocentas versões que já ouvi do concerto de nº 23, talvez esta da Grimaud esteja entre as melhores. O texto acima faz uma análise apurada da interpretação da francesa.

P.S. 2 Estou fazendo uma experiência de postar os arquivos para baixar em dois formatos: flac, de melhor qualidade, e mp3. Atendo a sugestão de um leitor / ouvinte do blog.

Oswald Beaujean
Translation: Stewart Spencer

01. Piano Concerto No.19 in F major K. 459 – I. Allegro vivace
02. Piano Concerto No.19 in F major K. 459 – II. Allegretto
03. Piano Concerto No.19 in F major K. 459 – III. Allegro assai
04. ‘Ch’io mi scordi di te’ – ‘Non temer, amato bene’ K. 505 (Idamante) – Recita
05. ‘Ch’io mi scordi di te’ – ‘Non temer, amato bene’ K. 505 (Idamante) – Rondo
06. ‘Ch’io mi scordi di te’ – ‘Non temer, amato bene’ K. 505 (Idamante) – Allegr
07. Piano Concerto No.23 in A major K. 488 – I. Allegro
08. Piano Concerto No.23 in A major K. 488 – II. Adagio
09. Piano Concerto No.23 in A major K. 488 – III. Allegro assai

Hélène Grimaud – Piano
Mojca Erdmann – Soprano
Kammerochester des Bayerischen Rundfunk


Hélène Grimaud: Não se deixem enganar: por trás destes olhos se encontra uma das melhores pianistas de sua geração

Hélène Grimaud: Não se deixem enganar: por trás destes olhos se encontra uma das melhores pianistas de sua geração

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