Facsimile of the autograph score in the Royal College of Music, London.
With a commentary by Robert Levin.
In his fascinating preface to Bärenreiter’s forthcoming facsimile, Professor Colin Lawson, Director of the Royal College of Music, describes the journey made by Mozart’s autograph following its sale in 1800 by Constanze, Mozart’s widow, to its eventual resting place in London where it is the jewel in the RCM’s extensive collection of historic manuscripts.
The Piano Concerto in C minor K. 491 is one of Mozart’s greatest piano concertos not least because of the dramatic character of its minor key (it is one of only two piano concertos composed in minor keys). It also has the largest orchestra he ever used in a piano concerto and the only piano concerto to use both oboes and clarinets.
Written in 1786 during a period of almost feverish activity, it was completed only 22 days after the A major concerto K. 488 and during composition of The Marriage of Figaro.
The autograph is exceptional in that Mozart records sketches that he later enlarged and extensively revised for the score thus allowing us an insight into his creative process. Mozart’s work appears here for the fi rst time in a colour facsimile, making it possible to easily recognise the contrasting colours of ink.
The renowned Mozart scholar and pianist Robert Levin has written an illuminating commentary. He explains Mozart’s method of composition and guides the reader page by page through the autograph.
This high-quality facsimile truly is a fascinating insight into Mozart’s art of composition.