Mozart was my classical music first love.
I heard this symphony for the first time when I was ten and devouring every recording I could get my hands on. To me, Mozart towered over every other composer even if I could not articulate why. This particular symphony helped elucidate this feeling. A light bulb switched on.
“On Tuesday, the fourth of November,” wrote Mozart to his father on 31 October 1783 (one day after his arrival in Linz), “I will be giving a concert in the theater -and since I have no symphony with me, I am writing one as fast as I can, for it must be ready by then.” The work was performed for the first time in Linz on 4 November 1783.
I marveled at the fact that this genius could so quickly deliver a work of such depth and invention. Facile, however, is a skill; true depth and meaning are divine. The introductory Adagio is marked with yearning tenderness and pathos: a short drama crafted by a great dramatist. Quickly, though, we find ourselves in the Allegro spiritoso in which the music bursts forth with playfulness, unabashed enthusiasm, and joie de vivre. The three movements that follow are equally inspired. In the video I selected for you, the Vienna Philharmonic and Carlos Kleiber are in top form. The spirit of this masterpiece soars.
Happy listening! – Eric Garcia