CONCERTO CADENZAS AND LEAD-INS
More Detailed Information for Scholarly Types
Ornamentation & Improvisation in Mozart by Frederick Neumann, Princeton University Press, 1986, ISBN 0-691-02711-0.This book encourages what some may see as an overly cautious "politically correct" approach. Nevertheless, the book is full of helpful information. See especially:
Chapter 16: "The Special Case of the Piano Concertos."
|For comprehensive information on classical improvisation and cadenzas (esp. Mozart) see the following articles and book excerpts, all by Robert Levin (consult your local library):|
• "Instrumental Ornamentation, Improvisation and Cadenzas" – Chapter XIV (pp. 267–291) of "The Norton/Grove Handbooks in Music: Performance Practice, Music After 1600, Edited by Howard Mayer Brown & Stanley Sadie," W.W. Norton & Co., New York/London, 1989, ISBN 0–393–02808–9.
• "Improvisation and Embellishment in Mozart Piano Concertos," Musical Newsletter, Vol. V, No. 2, Spring 1975, pp. 3–14.
• "Improvised Embellishments in Mozart's Keyboard Music," Early Music, May 1992, pp. 221–233.
• "Mozart's Keyboard Concertos" – Chapter Ten of "Eighteenth–Century Keyboard Music, Edited by Robert L. Marshall, Schirmer Books, 1994, pp. 350–393, ISBN 0–02–871355–9.
• "Concertos" – Section 10 ("The Music") of "The Mozart Compendium: A Guide to Mozart's Life and Music, Edited by H.C. Robbins Landon," Schirmer Books, New York, 1990, pp. 263–271, ISBN 0–02–871321–4.
• "Improvisation and Musical Structure in the Mozart Concerti," pp. 45–55 from Chapter Two of "L'INTERPRETATION DE LA MUSIQUE CLASSIQUE DE HAYDN A SCHUBERT (Colloque international, Evry, 13–15 octobre 1977)," FOUNDATION POUR L'ART ET LA RECHERCHE, Editions Minkoff (En dépot: Librairie Marceau 32, Avenue Marceau – Paris 8eme).
There is one other book that is strongly recommended for teachers and advanced students:
Unpremeditated Art: The Cadenza in the Classical Keyboard Concerto by Philip Whitmore, Clarendon Press –
Oxford, 1991, ISBN 0–19–315263–0.
The book is a perfect antidote to the rather "purist" leanings of Fetsch and Neumann. With scholarly evidence to back him up, Whitmore asserts: "It was far from Mozart's intention that other performers should write cadenzas in his personal style." Pianists of today, terribly mindful of "authenticity," find it unacceptable to play cadenzas in a "modern idiom" –– yet, as Whitmore reminds us, "Mozart and Beethoven had no hesitation in doing precisely that when performing concertos from an earlier generation. We should bear this in mind before condemning too loudly the cadenzas written by soloists from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries for the concertos of the classical masters."
This book is a "must read" for the creative cadenza enthusiast! Check your local library. If they do not have it, ask them to get it via interlibrary loan or order online.
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