Mozart Colloredo Serenade & Divertimento - SCO & Alexander Janiczek - Gramophone
04 February 2009Gramophone
It is called the Colloredo Serenade because it is presumed to have been written for the name-day of Hieronymus von Colloredo, Prince-Archbishop of Salzburg. But the instrumentation is a dead giveaway. No cellos, no timpani. It speaks of scaled-down outdoor music, not the sort Mozart would have had to write in honour of a royal cleric.
In addition, Salzburg University's records suggest that in common with similar pieces dating from summer months, this work of 1774 was probably written for the ceremonies marking the end of the academic year. As usual, Mozart added a March but Alexander Janiczek's pace is too swift, closer to a trot. Nor is his direction of the Allegro assai first movement rhythmically disciplined although the choice of tempo is appropriate. Matters improve markedly afterwards, the highlights being an Andante sixth movement, tenderly declaimed by muted violins and songful oboe, and a purposeful yet controlled Prestissimo finale.
The interpretation of the Divertimento is of uniform excellence, especially in the fourth movement, a minuet and three variations with the minuet repeated between each variation. Janiczek treats each reappearance slightly differently; but the last that ends the movement is played as was first heard the bass-line reinforced with what appears to be a small drum (or players' feet) simulating the thud of timpani.
Related LinksScottish Chamber OrchestraMozart: 'Colloredo' Serenade K. 203 & Divertimento K. 251