Christian Ihle Hadland / Arvid Engegård / Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra

Mozart: Piano Concertos Nos. 21 & 22

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Christian Ihle Hadland has become one of Norway's leading concert pianists, and he is already a major recording artist for Simax. He follows his 2010 album of solo piano pieces of Robert Schumann and Frédéric Chopin with a pair of piano concertos by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and gives listeners another aspect of his playing to judge. The performances of the Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467, and the Piano Concerto No. 22 in E flat major, K. 482, with the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra under Arvid Engegård, are modern in instrumentation, though the interpretations owe a good deal to historical practices and period sound, and Hadland's playing is crisp and Classically restrained, with a poetic side in the slow movements that is only a little suggestive of Chopin. With such tasteful expression and a technique that is polished and controlled, Hadland seems well-suited to playing Mozart concertos, though he doesn't quite inhabit the music or make it feel comfortable yet. He is agile and precise in his execution, and the orchestra provides alert accompaniment, yet there isn't a natural repartée between them, and the music feels more punctilious than easygoing. Simax provides excellent sound, so everything sounds clear and the performers seem ideally situated.

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