Joseph Long plays Mozart - Part 4
Join us online for the fourth concert in Joseph Long’s project to perform all 18 of Mozart's piano sonatas, which he embarked upon during lockdown in 2020.
The Sonata K.284 is by far the longest and perhaps the most unusual and imaginative of the early set of six sonatas that Mozart composed in 1774 and 1775 during his visit to Munich. In three movements, the first is proud and even somewhat grandiose, hinting at the massed forces of an orchestra rather than the intimate sound of a solo instrument. The second is titled Rondeau en Polonaise and manages to capture much of the rhythmic energy of this famous Polish dance. But it is in the extensive last movement that Mozart transcends any preconceived ideas that we might have about ‘typical’ finales with a theme and 12 variations that takes longer to perform than the other two movements put together. Each of these variations has its own unique character, many of them seeming to present the theme through the lens of a particular motif or rhythmic figure. During the later variations, Mozart plays with our expectations, phrasing directly across some of the theme's hitherto well-established divisions, and causing us to reassess that theme and hear it in new ways. The final two variations are an Adagio played at half the speed of the previous variations, followed by a spirited final variation in three-time, bringing the movement and sonata to a jubilant conclusion.