Sunday, November 13, 2016

Mozart Musical Masterpieces (author uncredited!)


Rating: WORTHY!

I've never understood why audiobook producers are so obsessed with larding-up the book with musical introductions and worse, interludes, which the author certainly did not write, never had in mind when writing, and when the book has no musical theme whatsoever. Well here's a case I not only approve of, but demand. If you have a book about music, then you need to include the music! It has to be an audiobook after a fashion, even if it's a print book.

This is a sweet little book of only some twenty pages. One might term it a suite little book, since it contains a CD of some of Mozart's most beloved work. The pages depict his life, and briefly discuss the music you can listen to, which consists of short pieces (a movement, an overture, and so on) from the following works: The Marriage of Figaro, Clarinet Concerto, Piano Concerto #21 (You may recall this as Elvira Madigan due to its association with a 1967 Swedish movie about a real life tragedy). Also featured are Horn Concerto #4, Exsultate Jubilante for the budding coloraturas amongst us, Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, the Gran Partita serenade, the Sinfonia Concertante, Symphony #40, and finally two pieces from Mozart's last work, the Requiem he pretty much wrote for himself as it happened. The featured pieces are ├ćeternam and Hostias).

There's also a little quiz at the back to test yourself on what you've learned. If you like this kind of thing, then you're in for a treat because it's one of a series featuring other composers, such as Beethoven and Chopin. You know what they say: when the Gershwin gets tenuto, the tenuto go Chopin.

I can't say all of Mozart's music is to my taste by any means, but some of my favorites are here. I recommend this not only for fans of Mozart but for anyone who wants to learn a little about him and enjoy some of his finest work.