The Concerto in A major, K414 impresses with its lyricism and rich melodic texture, especially in the first movement: the ritornello presents four different themes, the solo-piano elaborates with the addition of two more. Particularly the transitions between the individual parts are of expert design; a wonderful balance carries the musical progression without ever depending on dramatic effects. In the second movement, a solemn ‘andante’, Mozart emulates his great idol Johann Christian Bach, who had died the year before. As if paying a personal homage, he takes the first four bars of an overture that Bach had composed in 1763 for Baldassare Galuppi’s opera La Calamità dei Cuori
and respectfully adapts them for his main theme. Mozart had originally envisioned the ‘Rondo’ in A major, K386 for the finale of this concerto, but this posthumously published piece had to give way to a more compact final movement. Its playful main theme exemplifies how Mozart was able to write catchy and easily understandable themes, as he had alluded to in his letter. Only the central part of the movement contains flickering moments of operatic drama, the rest is pure pleasure of the highest order.
from notes by Gottlieb Wallisch © 2013