A recent performance of this piece in the Twin Cities recalled to me the first time I heard it long ago. I saved my allowance and whatever other money I had as a child for recordings from the Columbia Record Club. The first two 33 1/3 records I bought were performances of John Wummer playing the Mozart Flute Concertos. The third was the Mendelssohn. I don’t recall the artist. Right from the start, I knew this was something extraordinary. Its lines were simple yet profound. The composition seemed almost classical. The high E in the climax of the third movement seemed almost unbearably lovely. I did not realize at that time that I had memorized much of it. That came later, when it played through my head over and over. There was simply nothing like it then or now…:-)
With all due respect, yes and no. Hearing Mozart play his own music is the only way to get that close; the instrument is secondary imo. Mozart had a gift that was perfect.
“Fortunately a year or so later I heard Heifetz in his last concert performance of the work, in Los Angeles, Izler Solomon conducting. An incredible experience–not my last of Heifetz, fortunately, but one of the greatest.”
How lucky you were.
For many years I refused to listen to any other violin player than Heifetz. I had become so exhausted by the sturm und drang of what seemed the more popular style of playing. Recently, I have begun to listen to others and then to Heifetz, and am constantly surprised and amazed at his interpretations. It is as though he enters the mind of the composer, to share the inner structure of the piece; while, of course, using the most exquisite technique.
There is a small yet significant niche for those, such as you, who have experienced Heifetz firsthand. The most well-known favorable book is Sherry Kloss’ “Through My Eyes”. If you were to collect your impressions and recollections into an article or blog, there are many, such as myself, who would treasure such an effort.
It had been my dream at one point, to try to study with Heifetz, even though I am just a flute player. I did even write to him, but by that time, it was too late, as he was gone a few months later.
Good for Kavakos. To my thinking, Heifetz is a hard act to follow, but not impossible.
I heard the Sibelius performed last week by an outstanding flautist, DB of the Met Opera Orchestra. As much as I appreciate his pushing the envelope, I was reminded how very different the flute and violin are in terms of nuance and expression. It does not seem feasible to recreate the architecture we hear in the finest readings of this piece on any other instrument than the violin.