When the teenage Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote his five violin concertos in rapid succession, all in the year 1775, he never could have known that violinists all over the world would be obsessing over every detail of these works, for centuries!
And yet we still do. Just last week I was watching 13 performances of Mozart Concerto No. 4, with original cadenzas by the semi-finalists in the Shanghai Isaac Stern International Violin Competition. That's a lot of Mozart 4!
But a Mozart Concerto does show a measure of a player, and they are included not just in competitions, but in many orchestral auditions.
Also, Mozart did not write cadenzas for his concertos, and that provides another opportunity: a performer can write his or her own. In fact, just last week violinist María Dueñas, winner of the 2021 Menuhin Competition, was talking about how composing Mozart cadenzas led her to start composing other music.
What is your favorite Mozart Concerto, and why? Is it because you like to play it, or because you like to listen to it? What was the first one you learned? Or if you have not learned one yet, which would you like to learn? Have you ever written your own cadenzas for them? Please participate in the vote, and then share your thoughts on Mozart concertos.
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