Accompanied by the Concertgebouw Kamerorkest (Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra), the Dutch violinist Noa Wildschut performs Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 in D major, K. 218. As an encore, Wildschut plays the third movement from Johann Sebastian Bach’s Violin Sonata No.2 in A minor, BWV 1003. Recorded during the Sunday Morning Concert on October 13, 2019, at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4
Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 in D major, K. 218, is one of five violin concertos that Mozart composed. It was written in 1775 when Mozart was 19 years old and is considered one of his most accomplished works for the violin.
The work is scored for solo violin, strings, oboe, and horn in D.
The concerto has the usual fast-slow-fast structure. The movements are:
- Andante cantabile (A major)
- Rondeau (Andante grazioso – Allegro ma non troppo).
The first movement of Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 in D major, K. 218, is a lively and energetic Allegro in sonata form. It opens with a fanfare-like orchestral introduction, which sets the stage for the solo violin to enter with a virtuosic cadenza-like passage.
The solo violin then presents the main theme of the movement, a jaunty and rhythmic melody that is both playful and intricate. The orchestra responds with a more subdued secondary theme, which provides a contrast to the violin’s virtuosity.
Throughout the movement, Mozart employs a variety of techniques to showcase the soloist’s abilities, including rapid arpeggios, double stops, and intricate passages of scales and runs. The violin and orchestra engage in a playful dialogue, with the soloist often echoing and embellishing the themes presented by the orchestra.
The development section of the movement takes the themes presented in the exposition and develops them further, with the soloist and orchestra engaging in a more complex and intricate interplay. The recapitulation brings back the main theme, this time with some variations, and the movement ends with a triumphant coda.
2. Andante cantabile
The second movement of Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 in D major, K. 218, is a beautiful and lyrical Andante cantabile. It begins with a gentle introduction by the orchestra, which sets the stage for the violin soloist to enter with a poignant and expressive melody.
The violin sings a melancholic and expressive theme, which is accompanied by a simple and delicate orchestral accompaniment. The soloist develops the melody with variations, adding ornamentation and embellishments to the original theme.
The second movement is notable for its emotional depth and beauty, as well as its simplicity and restraint. Mozart uses the solo violin to convey a sense of longing and yearning, which is complemented by the orchestra’s understated and elegant accompaniment.
The movement features several moments of dialogue between the soloist and orchestra, as well as moments of solo virtuosity that highlight the violin’s expressive capabilities. However, overall, the second movement is characterized by its understated elegance and emotional intensity.
The movement ends quietly and introspectively, with a delicate and poignant coda that brings the theme to a gentle close. Overall, the second movement of Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 is a masterful example of the composer’s ability to create music of great beauty and emotional depth.
3. Rondeau (Andante grazioso – Allegro ma non troppo)
The finale of Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 4 is a lively and joyful Rondeau. It opens with a lively and catchy main theme presented by the orchestra and the solo violin.
The violin soloist plays with great virtuosity and energy, adding embellishments and variations to the main theme. The orchestra responds with a contrasting theme that is more subdued and lyrical, providing a moment of repose before the main theme returns.
Throughout the movement, Mozart employs a variety of rhythmic and harmonic devices to keep the listener engaged and entertained, including syncopated rhythms, unexpected key changes, and sudden shifts in dynamics.
The movement ends with a lively coda, in which the main theme returns with renewed energy and vigor, bringing the work to a rousing close.
Dutch violinist Noa Wildschut (born 2001) has already gained her place in the international classical music scene. At the age of 6, she appeared live on Dutch national television for the “Kinderprinsengrachtconcert 2007” in Amsterdam. Aged 7 she made her debut in the Main Hall of The Concertgebouw in Amsterdam at the “Night of the Promising”. In September 2016 she became an exclusive recording artist for Warner Classics.
Over the years Noa has built a considerable reputation and is regularly invited for festivals, recitals, and solo performances with orchestras, both in her home country, The Netherlands, and abroad. She has played together with inspiring musicians such as Janine Jansen, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Menahem Pressler, Igor Levit, Enrico Pace, Quirine Viersen, Paolo Giacometti, Arthur, and Lucas Jussen.
In recent years Noa has performed as a duo with pianist Yoram Ish-Hurwitz and since 2018 Noa forms a duo with the German pianist Elisabeth Brauß.
She works with orchestras such as the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Residentie Orkest, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra, Camerata Salzburg, Kremerata Baltica, Mutter Virtuosi, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Gürzenich Orchester Köln, Luzerner Sinfonieorchester, Sinfonieorchester Basel, Orquestra Sinfônica de João Pessoa in Brazil and Orquesta Sinfónica de Guayaquil in Ecuador, cooperating with conductors as Manfred Honeck, James Gaffigan, Michael Sanderling, Vasily Petrenko, Anja Bilmaier, Nicholas Collon and Elim Chan.
Noa won numerous awards at a young age, including the first prize at the International Violin Competition Louis Spohr in Weimar (at the age of 9), the first prize at the Iordens Violin Competition in The Hague (at the age of 10), the Concertgebouw Young Talent Award 2013 (at the age of 11) and she received the Anton Kersjes Violin Prize 2017 (at the age of 16). At Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Noa has been awarded the WEMAG Soloist Award 2018. Noa has been selected to be ECHO Rising Star for the season 2019-20 by the European Concert Hall Organisation; consequently, she toured Europe, visiting the major concert halls.
Noa started her violin lessons at the age of 4 with Coosje Wijzenbeek and from 2013 Noa studied with Professor Vera Beths at the Amsterdam University of the Arts.
Currently, Noa is studying under Professor Antje Weithaas at the Hochschule für Musik Hanns Eisler in Berlin. In addition to the regular classes, Noa has attended masterclasses and lessons with Ivry Gitlis, Jaap van Zweden, Menahem Pressler, Frank Peter Zimmerman, Anner Bijlsma, and Liviu Prunaru. From 2014 to 2019 Noa was a member of “Mutter Virtuosi”, a string ensemble led by Anne-Sophie Mutter. From 2015 to 2019 Noa held an official scholarship from the Anne-Sophie Mutter Foundation – their youngest member ever.
The Dutch public service broadcaster NTR produced the documentary “Noa11”, which was broadcast in November 2012. In September 2017 the documentary “A Family Quartet” was released about Noa and her family, which was screened in many Dutch theaters and was broadcast on TV.
Noa’s bow is a beautiful Dominique Peccatte, mid-19th-century, kindly on loan from the Dutch Musical Instruments Foundation from the Tettelaar collection. Noa plays a 1750 violin by Giovanni Battista Guadagnini, previously used by violinist Joshua Bell, generously loaned by a patron through the Tarisio Trust.
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