Keyboard instruments > Piano solo

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Piano Sonata G major K. 283 (189h)

Editor: Ernst Herttrich
Fingering: Hans-Martin Theopold

8.95 $

Urtext Edition, paperbound
Detailed critical commentary
(not available in the printed editions)
available free-of-charge: Download

Pages: 19 (V, 14), Size 23,5 x 31,0 cm
Order no. HN 601 · ISMN 979-0-2018-0601-3

Level of difficulty (Piano): medium (Level 5/6)

Curiously enough, only one of Mozart’s eighteen piano sonatas (and also only one of his 23 piano concerti) is in the pianistically rewarding key of G major: the sonata K. 283. It numbers among those six sonatas K. 279–284 that were probably written in Munich at the beginning of 1775, and is one of the favorites from this first set of sonatas among teachers and students alike. Played at the correct tempo, this sonata, although technically not too challenging, rarely fails to have its desired effect. That is especially true for its extended Presto (!) finale.

*****

FIRST MOVEMENT The fifth sonata K 283 (189h), in the pastoral and joyous key of G major, is especially popular; it again displays novel ideas, musically and pianistically. The diversity of its melodic invention is highly typical of Mozart, and so is the clear-cut sonata form of the first movement. The very first idea is a marvel of folkmusic-like invention. The opening theme and its continuation is an interplay of question and answer with the final response in baroque hemiola rhythm (a sudden 3/2 meter interpolated in a 3/4 movement). The ornamented unison passage which follows (mm. 16-22) is superbly written and sounds especially brilliant and full-bodied on the pianos of Mozart’s time. This tutti effect was one of his favourites, and he also used it in later works, such as the Variation on a Theme by Gluck K 455 the Piano Concerto K 456/I and the cadenza of the Piano Concerto in G major K 453/I.

SECOND MOVEMENT The Andante in C major is unpretentious, but with the help of subtle shading in performance, the repeated notes of the theme can become really effective. Unlike the first movement, which in place of a new development section simply presents a new idea followed by an extended transition to the recapitulation, the second movement contains a true development in the 19th century textbook sense, presenting the subject first in the right hand (in D minor and C major) and then in the lower register and so no.

THIRD MOVEMENT A scintillating virtuoso Presto concludes this Sonata. At the very end, there is a typical Mozartian joke: he wrote the word Coda into the score; but instead of the expected elaborate epilogue, this tail consists of only two concluding chords.

Paul and Eva Badura-Skoda

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