Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Quintet in E flat major for horn, violin, two violas and cello, K 407; Horn Concertos (No. 1 in D major, K 412/514; No. 2 in E flat major, K 417; No. 3 in E flat major, K 447; No. 4 in E flat major, K 495), arranged for horn and string quartet
Radek Baborák - horn, Baborák Ensemble: Dalibor Karvay, Martina Bačová - violin, Karel Untermüller, Vilém Kionka - viola, Hana Baboráková - cello, Štěpán Kratochvíl - double-bass
Precious few have as much to say about Mozart's horn concertos as does the superlative, internationally renowned Czech horn player Radek Baborák, who for a number of years was a soloist of the Berliner Philharmoniker. An artist with a penchant for seeking out the new, he has joined forces with other outstanding musicians (including Štěpán Kratochvíl, from the Münchner Philharmoniker and the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, and Vilém Kionka, from the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra) so as to interpret the pieces as arranged for horn and string quartet: "I liked the idea of presenting the concertos in the form they may have been heard when Mr. Leutgeb would visit the Mozarts' home, get together with Mr. Michael Haydn and Mr. Süssmayr, and make music." In Mozart's time, such treatments were quite common (Michael Haydn, for instance, transcribed the Rondo from Concerto No. 3), with their serving to pinpoint the dialogue between the virtuoso parts of the first violin and the horn. According to the preserved correspondence, Mozart tried his hand at the horn, which he found highly amusing. The composer wrote most of his horn works for his older friend, the far-famed virtuoso Joseph Leutgeb. His mocking comments in the score ("Wolfgang Amadé Mozart takes pity on Leutgeb, ass, ox, and simpleton."), as well as writing Concerto No. 4 in inks of four colours, bear witness to the close relationship between the two artists. This playfulness and the sheer joy of making music together are duly reflected in this inspiring album, recorded by Radek Baborák and friends.
Mozart's horn concertos with Radek Baborák - chamber and virtuoso music.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Quintet in E flat major for French Horn, Violin, Two Violas and Cello, K. 407 (386c)