Mozart: Violin Concertos – No 4 in D major, K218; No 5 in A major, K219 (Turkish)

Reviewed on Mon 16 Apr, 2018

Nikolaj Znaider is especially nuanced in the elegant contours of the D major concerto, the LSO accompanying with pristine attention to shape and colour.

Nikolaj Znaider begins his survey of Mozart’s violin concertos with the London Symphony Orchestra as both soloist and conductor with temperately paced accounts of the D major Fourth and A major Fifth. Youthful works here garbed with more delicacy than usually afforded them, they bloom in the velvet-rich sound of the orchestra’s modern instruments but remain delightfully spry and finessed in adroitly judged period feel. Znaider is especially nuanced in the elegant contours of the D major concerto, the LSO accompanying with pristine attention to shape and colour. Its companion is treated to ebullient playing, the orchestra lithely alert to Znaider’s dancing lead, by turns filigree-soft and intimate in the lilting Adagio, no less poetic in the ornamented exoticism of the finale. There, the LSO strings are heard to characterful effect, the orchestra sounding wholly idiomatic. Lindsay Kemp’s informative booklet notes are exemplary, recorded sound lending crisp clarity to enjoyable performances.
–Michael Quinn