Angela Hewitt / Hannu Lintu / National Arts Centre Orchestra

Mozart: Piano Concertos Nos. 22 & 24

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The listener wanting a recording of these two well-loved Mozart piano concertos has plenty of choices, but this one, by Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt, is especially smoothly done. Hewitt keeps the temperature low throughout, and in the process the Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491, is stripped of a good deal of its usual proto-Beethovenian quality and made quite restrained. That might not be to every taste, but the detail with which Hewitt works out her interpretation is striking. Both there and in the Piano Concerto No. 22 in E flat major, K. 482, there is the sensation that Hewitt can explain why she plays every note the way she does, and that further she has the technical equipment to realize her every aim. This is all true despite the relatively large scale of the performance, with modern instruments and the sizable string contingent from the National Arts Centre Orchestra in Hewitt's hometown of Ottawa. The strings and the rest of the orchestra are held in check and beautifully matched to Hewitt's sound by conductor Hannu Lintu, and Hyperion's sound, recorded in the orchestra's home auditorium, is adequate to the task. A lovely Mozart release.

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