Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Variations (5) on an original theme for piano, 4 hands in G major, K. 501

    Description by Brian Robins

    Following the successful production of "Le Nozze di Figaro" in May 1786, Mozart contemplated the possibility of a trip to England. It was an idea that came to nothing, and his next trip abroad was the highly successful visit to Prague in January 1787. With the notable exception of the String Quartet in D, K499, and the Symphony No.38 in D, composed in preparation for the visit to Prague and which now bears the name of that city, Mozart's catalog entries for the latter months of 1786 show that he was much involved with the piano. In addition to the majestic Piano Concerto in C, K503, three trios featuring the instrument (the Piano Trios in G, K496 and B Flat, K502, and the delicious Clarinet Trio E Flat), and two sets of variations also date from this period. The present set is based on an unidentified theme that was probably composed by Mozart himself. Surviving sketches show that his original intention had been to compose the work for two pianos, but he later reverted to the four hand version published by Hoffmeister in Vienna the following year.

    Parts/Movements

    1. Andante
    2. Var. 1
    3. Var. 2
    4. Var. 3
    5. Var. 4
    6. Var. 5

    Appears On

    Year Title / Performer Label / Catalog # AllMusic Rating
    2017
    Deutsche Grammophon
    0028947980
    2017
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2016
    Stradivarius
    STV 37045
    2015
    Various Artists
    Decca / Deutsche Grammophon
    2015
    Hyperion
    CDA 68129
    2015
    Decca
    002369302
    2015
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4794647
    2015
    Ligia
    LIDI 0104277
    2014
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2014
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4793622
    2013
    Apex
    2564651687
    2012
    MDG
    9061753
    2012
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2012
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4779884
    2012
    Newton / Newton Classics
    8802114
    2012
    Sony Classical
    88691912562
    2011
    Gramola
    98900
    2011
    Decca
    2011
    Decca
    2011
    Decca
    4782746
    2011
    Brilliant Classics
    94198
    2011
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4779523
    2011
    Deutsche Grammophon
    2010
    Decca
    2010
    Naxos
    857809698
    2009
    EMI Classics / EMI Music Distribution / Warner Classics
    5099926705
    2009
    Nimbus
    2537/9
    2008
    Philips
    4646602
    2007
    Apex
    2007
    BMG / Sony Classical
    SK 93868
    2006
    Summit Records
    456
    2006
    Warner Classics
    2006
    Brilliant
    93025
    2006
    Ligia / Ligia Digital
    417106
    2006
    Philips
    2006
    Various Artists
    Philips
    2006
    Bongiovanni
    56322
    2006
    DHM Deutsche Harmonia Mundi
    83288
    2005
    Warner Classics
    4623362
    2005
    Apex
    256462037
    2005
    Querstand
    9706
    2005
    Brilliant
    92540
    2004
    Sony Music Distribution
    92735
    2004
    Sony Music
    5174902
    2003
    Sony Classical
    93015
    2003
    Eroica Distribution
    3140
    2002
    CBC Records
    1151
    2000
    Naxos
    553518
    2000
    Various Artists
    Philips
    000575602
    1999
    Deutsche Grammophon
    4594752
    1997
    Philips
    456132
    1996
    Philips
    454026
    1995
    Philips
    446557
    1995
    Philips
    1995
    Arabesque
    6652
    1995
    Orfeo
    23991
    1994
    London
    440474
    1994
    Chandos
    9162
    1994
    Teldec
    91378
    1992
    ASV
    792
    1991
    Sony Classical
    44915
    1991
    Philips
    1991
    Philips
    422516
    1988
    CBS Masterworks / CBS Records
    MK-44545
    Ars Produktion
    368359
    Moir Fortepiano Duo
    Deutsche Grammophon
    431996
    Forte Distribution
    99F11/14
    Brilliant
    92630
    Brilliant
    92630/13
    Vox
    3010
    Town Hall
    19
    Town Hall
    58
    Arion
    268136
    Claves Favor Collection
    86099
    Pavane
    7244