As part of the War and Peace concert series, Trevor Pinnock is conducting works by Handel, Haydn and Mozart, all dating from the eighteenth century, when the Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle brought an end to the War of the Austrian Succession.
‘Trevor Pinnock’s performances of Handel make me jump out of my seat!’ – enthusiastic words spoken by none other than Leonard Bernstein, and rightly so. With his strong sense of authenticity, Pinnock has for decades been a unique advocate of works from the Baroque and early Classical periods, as is evident from his performances of Handel’s brilliant Music for the Royal Fireworks, originally composed to be performed at Green Park in London at the official service in 1749 celebrating the Peace of Aix-la-Chapelle, which the work totally eclipsed. Mozart’s Violin Concerto No. 5 and Haydn’s ‘Military’ Symphony are no less colourful – both works imitate Turkish military music. Although the Turks had besieged Austria several times, their exotic percussion instruments caught on in Europe.
The soloist in the Mozart is Vilde Frang, the young Norwegian violin wonder who made her stage debut under the direction of Mariss Jansons at the age of twelve. Critics have repeatedly praised the spontaneity, authenticity, unaffectedness and naturalness of her live and recorded performances. One German newspaper wrote, ‘Frang’s violin is a human voice. She speaks through her violin.’