|Cover design by Alex Steinweiss|
Mozart: Violin Sonatas, K. 296, 378 and 379
Alexander Schneider, violin; Ralph Kirkpatrick, harpsichord
Recorded November 26-28, 1945
Columbia Masterworks set MM-650, six 78-rpm records
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At the time, the substitution of a harpsichord for the piano in these works was somewhat controversial, and still might raise some eyebrows; but it must be understood that the pianos of Mozart's time were actually closer in sonority to the harpsichord than to the modern grand piano, and in 1945 replicas of fortepianos (the term that has come to be used for early pianos) were still a good twenty or thirty years in the future. So the use of the harpsichord here represents a compromise, although in truth it works better in the earliest Mozart violin sonatas than in the later ones. Ralph Kirkpatrick, with all his artistry, was probably the only harpsichordist at the time who was able to pull it off convincingly.