Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Ch'io mi scordi di te...Non temer, amato bene, recitative and aria for soprano, piano & orchestra, K. 505

    Description by John Palmer

    Ch'io mi scordi di te...Non temer, amato bene is one of Mozart's great concert arias. Composed for Nancy Storace (1761 - 1817), who sang Susanna in the first performance of Le nozze di Figaro, the recitative and aria are reminiscent of Figaro, but are more akin to opera seria than anything remotely comic. By the mid-1780s, the English Storace had become the rising star in Vienna, eclipsing Aloysia Weber. Her annual salary at the Italian Opera was six times what Mozart would earn when he became engaged by the court.

    Mozart's manuscript copy of Ch'io mi scordi di te is dated December 26, 1786, and the text is from an addition to Idomeneo, Act II, Scene 1, by Abate Giambattista Varesco. The piece includes an obbligato part for keyboard, which Mozart no doubt played at the premiere sometime in February 1787. Most interestingly, the obbligato contains no Alberti figures; what few of these appear in the aria are given to the strings.

    The recitative of K. 505 was originally part of another scene and aria, "Non più, tutto ascoltai," K. 490, which was replaced the original opening number of Act II of Idomeneo for a private performance in March 1786. In the scene and aria for Storace, Mozart leaves out much of the recitative text and creates a more concentrated setting with characteristics more common to his chamber music. For instance, the modulation from the G minor of the recitative to the E flat major of the aria begins very early in the recitative.

    The aria is marked Rondo, a form that was fashionable at the time in vocal composition. The beginning Andante segment is actually in ternary form and is introduced by the orchestra. The central, contrasting section begins at "Tu sospiri?" and modulates to the dominant. After the return of the soprano's opening lines, Mozart prepares for the shift to the faster, second part of the aria in an unusual and imaginative way. Virtually unaccompanied outbursts from the soprano ("sempre il cuorsaria," "Stella barbare," and "stella spietate!") alternate with rapid flourishes on the piano, creating an atmosphere of expectancy that allows for the most startling change in rhythm. The ensuing Allegretto is a serial rondo (ABACADA Coda). In the coda, Mozart produces the opposite of the effect he achieved in the transition when sixteenth-note scale passages in the soprano slow to eighth and then to half notes.

    Appears On

    Year Title Label Catalog #
    2016 Decca 4789679
    2015 Warner Classics 553028
    2015 L'Oiseau-Lyre 4787863
    2015 ATMA Classique ACD 23015
    2015 DG Deutsche Grammophon 4794370
    2015 Berlin Classics 0300646BC
    2014 Orfeo D'Or C 877134I
    2014 Decca
    2014 Decca B002067602
    2014 Erato 0825646262687
    2014 ATMA Classique ACD 22636
    2014 BIS BIS 2054
    2013 Berlin Classics 0300541BC
    2012 CD Accord ACD 1752
    2012 Profil - Edition Günter Hänssler PH 10050
    2012 Erato / Virgin Classics 5099960258
    2012 MDG / Zebralution
    2011 X5 Music Group
    2011 EMI Classics
    2011 Brilliant Classics 94116
    2011 Decca
    2011 Deutsche Grammophon / DG Deutsche Grammophon 4779849
    2011 Deutsche Grammophon / DG Deutsche Grammophon B 001620402
    2011 DG Deutsche Grammophon
    2011 RCA Red Seal 794051
    2011 Erato / Virgin Classics 5099907094521
    2010 DG Deutsche Grammophon
    2010 Divine Art dda25086
    2010 DG Deutsche Grammophon
    2010 Erato
    2010 Erato / Virgin Classics 5099962863
    2008 Ondine ODE1139-2F
    2008 Golden Melodram 40086
    2008 Philips 4646602
    2007 Brilliant 93408
    2007 EMI Classics 87894
    2007 Orfeo 741073
    2007 Chandos 10444
    2006 Music & Arts CD1187
    2006 DG Archiv 4775799
    2006 Philips
    2006 Philips
    2006 Haenssler 93129
    2006 EMI Music Distribution 355685-2
    2006 EMI Classics 3556822
    2006 Erato / Virgin 0946332631
    2006 Fabula 29910
    2006 BIS 1529
    2006 Testament 1088
    2005 Decca / Eloquence 4767459
    2005 Brilliant 99731
    2005 EMI Music Distribution 63702
    2005 Decca 4756302
    2005 Brilliant 92540
    2004 NM Classics 97018
    2004 Decca B0001863
    2004 Capriccio Records 49382
    2004 PentaTone Classics 5186133
    2004 Ondine 1043
    2004 Berlin Classics 0013252BC
    2003 MDG 9400967
    2003 Philips 000121702
    2003 Haenssler 93064
    2002 Cedille Records 64
    2002 EMI Music Distribution 74803
    2001 Decca 467905
    2000 Tudor Records 7073
    2000 Testament 1178
    2000 Capriccio Records 49514
    2000 Philips 464 880-2PB10
    2000 MDG MDG340 0967-2
    1999 PLGI / PolyGram 465145B
    1999 Decca 448246
    1998 London 458084
    1998 Decca
    1998 Philips 446712
    1998 DG Deutsche Grammophon 457582
    1998 Virgin 45319
    1997 RCA 61357
    1997 London 455 241-2LC5
    1995 London/Decca / London 448300
    1995 Orfeo 330931
    1995 Philips 446 241-2PM
    1995 Erato 98497
    1995 Philips 446 222-2PB25
    1994 RCA 61635
    1994 Sony Music Distribution 58984
    1994 Capriccio Records 10613
    1991 London 430513
    1991 Philips 422523
    Biographies in Music 703
    Bluebell 068
    Philips 420950
    Challenge Classics 72013
    DG Archiv 4776272
    Panton Records 0860
    Brilliant 92632
    Brilliant 93408/5
    Brilliant 99731/2
    Brilliant 93408/2
    Brilliant 92632/3
    Calig 50957
    Panton Records 810860
    Melodram 16529
    Decca 000233502