Piano Concerto in A Major, K. 488, Allegro (first movement)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Norton Recorded Anthology of Western Music, CD 8 Tracks 12-27
When I was younger, less calm of mind, I did not like to listen to Mozart's piano music. Man, did I love Schoenberg, though. I still do but I have grown to understand what to listen for in a piano concerto like this one that has so many darn scales. Mozart loved to fit things together. He loved that logic that no theorist could pin down. That elusive quality that fits things together in a way that can only be described as musical
There is a joy for music in Mozart's work that I have heard in one other composer. Oddly, perhaps, that composer is Boulez. Though so far apart in style and time, the two share a quickness in mind and a delight for their craft.
It is a shame, and I think safe to say, that there will not be a Third Viennese School. The patrons of the first and the self-importance of the second are forever gone from this earth, now cluttered with radio stations, TV, and electric guitars. What could it be like, if, somehow, it were possible? From the first Viennese composers we have the desire to see the world politely. It is the philosophy of the Enlightenment expressed through Major and minor scales and their attendant triads. Realizing the weakness of reason and the persistence of war, the second Viennese put raw flesh on stage (so to speak) and pulled from it the tone rows that they believed indicated a new path. But what path is there when we can see the whole world at once?