International tour – St. Gallen
Sponsored by: Vontobel
About the program
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: „A Berenice”, K.70
Leopold Mozart took his extremely talented children Nannerl and little Wolfgang to London in 1764-65. We learn of their stay in England from the words written by Dr. Daines Barrington for the Royal Society, describing the amazing ability of the eight year-old boy. The doctor speaks about the performance when little Wolfgang improvised in various musical genres, including opera arias. Just how well Mozart mastered the expression of the sublime, majestic feelings as a small boy is well illustrated by the respectful arias written for mythical-allegoric text following his return to Salzburg after the long stay in London, the second of which was Berenice. The arias were played in the Salzburg court to pay tribute to Archbishop Sigismund von Schrattenbach – “to everyone’s amazement”, according to the yearbooks
Ludwig van Beethoven: Piano concerto no.4, Op.58
Beethoven wrote his Piano Concerto No.4 between 1805 and 1807. It was innovative in that the sonata-like first movement starts not with an orchestral introduction, but a piano solo. Even more unusual was the omission of wind instruments in the second movement, with piano and strings in a dramatically charged dialogue. The work was premičred as part of a “mammoth concert” at the Theater an der Wien, alongside performances of the 5th and 6th Symphonies, as well as extracts from the Mass in C. As with the premičres of his previous three piano concertos, the soloist was the composer himself, though this time it was clear that he was hardly fit to perform on account of his deafness. As a result, his student Czerny was to premičre the 5th Piano Concerto.
Antonín Dvořak: Symphony No. 8
Dvořák started to compose his Symphony No. 8 in August 1889 in his beloved apartment in the countryside in Vysoka, in a stable financial position and using all of his creative talent. It took him only two-and-a-half weeks to complete the sketches and the piece was completed by 8 November. The premiere in February 1890 was conducted by the composer himself. It was Symphony No. 8 that he conducted in 1891 in Cambridge when receiving the honorary doctoral title of this prestigious university.