13 Jun 2020

MOZART: Symphony No 38 in D K504, Prague

From Music Alive, 1:00 pm on 13 June 2020
Orchestra Wellington 'Prague'

Orchestra Wellington 'Prague' Photo: Hannah Neman

This performance was recorded at ‘Amalia & Friends’ in Wellington, a series of concerts to celebrate the return of live music, and the important place it has in all our lives, after the Covid-19 lockdown. 

In some ways, these concerts approach the experience that Mozart’s original audiences would have enjoyed. Many of his works were performed in churches, or in cathedrals such as the one in Salzburg, where Mozart was employed. His music was written with these kind of spaces in mind, with the soft, rich resonance that high ceilings, wooden beams and ornate plasterwork provide. Other works were premièred in the private salons of his wealthy patrons, making them an intimate experience for small audiences who could observe the performers closely. Mozart would lead the performances from within the orchestra or as soloist, as Amalia Hall does here.

Mozart Symphony No 38 ‘Prague’

  •  Adagio – Allegro
  •  Andante
  •  Finale (Presto)

This symphony was premièred in Prague, as Mozart was cresting a wave of success created by his opera 'The Marriage of Figaro', which made Mozart the darling of the city during his visit there in 1787. Mozart and his wife stayed again with Count Franz Joseph Thun, the patron for whom the Linz symphony was also written. In the Count’s Prague palace, the Mozarts were wined and dined and generally feted all around.

The symphony he presented there reflects the music that had had such success with Prague audiences. It continues in the same vein of drama and lyrical melody that permeates his operas of this period.  (Notes: Erica Challis)

Recorded 13 June 2020, St Andrew's on The Terrace, Wellington by RNZ Concert

Producer: David McCaw

Engineer: Darryl Stack