This is the first album with the complete set of the six so-called Palatine Sonatas for Piano and Violin by Mozart. These works take their nickname from Mozart dedication of these pieces to the Electress of Bavaria, Elisabeth von der Pfalz, whose picture is on the cover of this album. The Sonatas were written in 1778 in Mannheim and Paris and they are the first works of this kind in history, in which the violin no longer plays second fiddle to the piano, but is treated as an equal partner. These sonatas are performed here on historically correct instruments with a fortepiano of the kind that the composer himself had at his disposal at the time of their composition. Both the performers have an outstanding feeling for the historical style, combined with a healthy sense of musicianship, which make these performances very stirring indeed. A most enjoyable album with rousing performances, captured in a glorious sound frame, which will stir the heart of every Mozart lover.
Johannes Leertouwer was born in 1959 and started playing the violin already at a very early age. While still studying at the Amsterdam Sweelinck Conservatory, he took part in the National Oscar Back Violin Competition of 1983, where he was awarded the coveted Elisabeth Back Prize as well as the Buma Award, the latter for best performance of the obligatory contemporary work. This enabled him to continue his studies with Josef Suk in Vienna and Prague, for which he also received a grant from the Dutch ministry of culture. He concentrates nowadays mainly on chamber music, appearing in recitals and ensemble concerts all over Europe, striving for authentic performances on historic instruments.
Rumiko Harada started her piano studies at the age of three in Fukuoka, Japan and went to study with Kiyoto Tanaka at the famous Toho-Gakuen Conservatory in 1976. In 1983 she moved to Paris to continue her studies with Patrick Cohen, after which she decided to specialise in chamber music with authentic instruments. Rumiko Harada lives in Mallorca, Spain, from where she undertakes concert tours Europe, Japan and the United States.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, whose actual name is Joannes Chrysotomus Wolfgangus Theophilus Mozart, was a composer, pianist, violinist and conductor from the classical period, born in Salzburg. Mozart was a child prodigy. Already competent on keyboard and violin, he composed from the age of five and performed before European royalty. Along with Johann Sebastian Bach and Ludwig van Beethoven, Mozart is considered to be one of the most influential composers of all of music's history. Within the classical tradition, he was able to develop new musical concepts which left an everlasting impression on all the composers that came after him. Together with Joseph Haydn and Ludwig van Beethoven he is part of the First Viennese School. At 17, Mozart was engaged as a musician at the Salzburg court, but grew restless and traveled in search of a better position. From 1763 he traveled with his family through all of Europe for three years and from 1769 he traveled to Italy and France with his father Leopold after which he took residence in Paris. On July 3rd, 1778, his mother passed away and after a short stay in Munich with the Weber family, his father urged him to return to Salzburg, where he was once again hired by the Bishop. While visiting Vienna in 1781, he was dismissed from his Salzburg position. He chose to stay in the capital, where he achieved fame but little financial security. During his final years in Vienna, he composed many of his best-known symphonies, concertos, and operas, and portions of the Requiem, which was largely unfinished at the time of his death.