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To mark the 225th anniversary of Mozart’s death, Decca and Deutsche Grammophon are releasing the most authoritative, complete and scholarly box set ever devoted to the work of a single composer. The 200CD Complete Edition was created in partnership with the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation and Mozart expert Professor Cliff Eisen of King’s College London, and will be released worldwide on 28 October 2016.
Entitled ‘Mozart 225: The New Complete Edition’, the set is the fruit of years of painstaking scholarship, 18 months of planning and curation, and presents every single work by Mozart – right up to a new song discovered only last year – in a ground-breaking multimedia package.
The set features 600 world-class soloists and 60 orchestras across 200 CDs (ordered chronologically within genre), including 30 CDs of alternative interpretations of the best-known works providing a choice between traditional and period instruments.
There are also two major and lavishly illustrated hardback books including a radical new full-length biography by Cliff Eisen plus a work-by-work commentary from Mozart experts worldwide.
Amongst its 240 hours of music, Mozart 225 features over 5 hours of newly recorded material, including:
- the world premiere recording of a recently discovered lost song (K477a) written in friendly competition with Antonio Salieri
- the first recording of Sonata K331 with the Rondo “alla turca” from the recently discovered autograph manuscript, played by Francesco Piemontesi
- a brand new disc from Accademia Bizantina and Ottavio Dantone
- over 2 hours of new recordings on Mozart’s own instruments
In addition to all of Mozart’s completed works, for the first time on disc all the recorded fragments are brought together, many works completed by others as well as his arrangements of Handel and Bach.
Each copy of this 15,000 Limited Edition is individually numbered and contains access to an innovative Mozart 225 Libretto App (offering sung texts in original language and parallel translation of choice – English, French or German) plus links to the authoritative urtext scores of the online edition of the Neue Mozart-Ausgabe.
The recordings have been newly selected from the archives of Decca and Deutsche Grammophon as well as 18 other labels, with an artist list which encapsulates Mozartian excellence past and present: Abbado, Ashkenazy, Auger, Barenboim, Bartoli, Bilson, Böhm, Brendel, Brüggen, Curzon, Damrau, DiDonato, Fleming, Gardiner, Gilels, Gulda, Haskil, Hogwood, Janowitz, Kozena, Levin, Mackerras, Marriner, Mutter, Nézet-Séguin, Pinnock, Pires, Popp, Rattle, Schiff, Simoneau, Solti, Te Kanawa, Terfel, Uchida, Villazón, Wunderlich and hundreds more.
The innovative layout of Mozart 225 presents the works chronologically within genre, thus offering listeners the chance to explore the composer in a new context – e.g. by juxtaposing a horn concerto with a piano concerto from the same period. Underscoring this approach, a new biography by leading Mozart scholar Professor Cliff Eisen reappraises the traditional Mozart narrative and by returning to the sources describes a life both professionally and personally successful, not the still-common Romantic narrative, laden with pathos, characteristic of Mozart biography over more than two centuries.
Further scholarship is provided by a second hardback book of work-by-work commentary from 30 renowned experts plus a separate new “K book”, exclusive to Mozart 225, presenting the numbering of the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation’s forthcoming new Edition of the Köchel catalogue of Mozart’s works. Each set also contains 5 high-quality collector’s prints of Mozart autograph scores, the last-known portrait and a famous letter to his father from the treasures of the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation.
“The time is surely right to take a fresh look at one of the world’s most sublime artistic achievements” says Paul Moseley, Universal Music Group’s Director of Mozart 225. “We have started from first principles, reassessing new thinking in performance practice and scholarship to produce something that we hope will be an item of desire and reference for general music lovers but also a first port of call for places of study. Our aim with this Mozart 225 campaign is to promote pleasure, wonder, debate and discovery for both existing and new audiences all over the world.”
“For 175 years, the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation has been devoted to fostering tradition as well as embracing new approaches when encountering the works of Mozart”, says Dr Johannes Honsig-Erlenburg, President of the Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation. “It is a great pleasure to see that the Neue Mozart-Ausgabe, the Foundation’s ambitious editorial project begun in 1954, has greatly influenced performance of Mozart in our time. This Mozart 225 recorded Edition is a special opportunity to make this achievement audible to the entire musical world.”
Mozart 225 – The New Complete Edition launches at the Mozart Wohnhaus in Salzburg on 25th August and goes on sale on October 28th. The flagship Edition will be accompanied by a suite of further Mozart 225 products including a unique 33 DVD set of all 22 Mozart operas; a starter 3CD collection of Mozart ‘Singles’; digital download bundles, streaming albums and newly themed playlists, all aimed at achieving the widest possible awareness, adoption and engagement with classical music’s greatest genius.