Anne-Sophie Mutter - The Four Seasons
Anne-Sophie Mutter
The Four Seasons
Artist: Anne-Sophie Mutter
Label: EMI Digital ‎– CDC 7470432
Country: Europe
Released: 1984-10-10, 1990-10-25
Genre: Classical
Ranking: 9.4


Concerto N.1 in Mi Maggiore, RV. 269 "La Primavera"
01 I. Allegro 3:19
02 II. Largo E Pianissimo 3:06
03 III. Danza Pastorale, Allegro 4:38
Concerto N.2 in Sol Minore, RV. 315 "L'Estate"
04 I. Allegro Non Molto 5:34
05 II. Adagio 2:01
06 III. L'orage (Presto) 2:47
Concerto N.3 in Fa Maggiore, RV. 293 "L'Autunno"
07 I. Allegro 4:54
08 II. Adagio 2:48
09 III. Allegro 3:24
Concerto N.4 in Fa Minore, RV.297 "L'Inverno"
10 I. Allegro Non Molto 3:28
11 II. Largo 2:00
12 III. Allegro 3:13

Companies, etc.



The Four Seasons

The violin as an extension of the soul

When asked today, she’s not exactly sure what first awakened her interest. it may have been a 0violin concerto that she heard on the radio,or perhaps a violinist she saw on TV. Whatever the reason, the little Anne-Sophie Muter asked for violin lessons for the fifth birthday.

Hardly a normal birthday wish for a child that hadn’t yet started school, but the parents went along with it. And once the lessons began, it was soon apparent that Anne-Sophie Muter was highly talented. Moreover, she had the good fortune to find a teacher who knew how to deal with a gifted pupil: the lessons placed the emphasis on the young girl finding out things for herself, on experimenting and forming her own taste.

Thus Anne-Sophie Mutter’s talent could develop unhindered, and she was not trained to be a Wunderkind-a term that the artist finds quite inappropriate, as she is concerned.


Today, the virtuoso realizes that it was a special fondness for the sound of the violin that first awakened her love for the instrument. And she can now put into works what this love means to her: “the violin is like an extension of my soul”.

Karajan was amazing!

An appearance at the 1976 Lucerne Festival paved the way for a major career: Herbert von Karajan listened to the concert, spoke to Anne-Sophie Muter’s teachers, and invited the-year-old violinist to come to Berlin. The young virtuoso’s parents were a bit nervous at the idea,unlike their daughter, who scarcely ever suffers from stage fright to this day.

Asked how she felt about playing under the great conductor, Anne-Sophie Muter gives a response as honest as it straightforward: “Karajan was simply amazing!”


The audition in the Berlin

Philharmonie was a legendary occasion. In the huge concert-hall, the young girl played one of the most difficult solo works in all music under Karajan’s eagle eye: the Bach D minor Cbaconne. The members of the orchestra had retreated to the dress circle-it was during a rehearsal break-and listened in amazement. As the audition came to an end, one thing was clear: Karajan, a pitiless judge and the sponsor of so many young talents, had made a sensational discovery.

To the accompaniment of a tremendous response from the press, Karjan presented Anne-Sophie Muter to the world at the Salzburg festival, Whitsun 1977, as the soloist in Mozart’s G major concerto. The final break-through came the following year, when the young artist played the same work in the BERLIN Philharmonie, and soon after this her international career was launched by an appearance at the Brighton Festival with the LONDON Philharmonic, conducted by Daniel Barenboim.

If we are to believe the major critics, what makers Anne-Sophie Muter so popular with today’s audiences was already in evidence at the outset of her career. Perhaps not developed to the same extent, but it was definitely there: a unique cultivation of the violin’s sound, coupled with passionate intensity. When Anne-Sophie Muter plays, an immense artistic energy can be detected in ever note, in every phrase, and there is simply no doubt that everything one hears “comes from the soul”. By the some token, the high level of virtuosity is never an end in its own right: it serves the clear purpose of bringing the sound to life. For this reason, Anne-Sophie Muter steered clear for a long time of those violin showpieces that consist principally of technical effects. she striver at all times after musicality rich in content.

Entry in the book of records

In 1984, Anne-Sophie Muter recorded a work with her mentor Karajan and the Vienna Philharmonic that fulfills these demands: Vivaldi’s concerto cycle the four Seasons. And it was soon clear that the record on the EMI CLASSICS label was well on the way to becoming an international hit. In 1990, six years after it was first released, the artist was awarded a golden disc for 250,000 copies sold in Germany-a quite exceptional event in the classical business. In another four years, the same number a gain was sold, so that Anne-Sophie Muter has two things to celebrate in 1994: the record is 10 years old, and a record of a different kind has been broken.. The gifted violinist is the first solo artist in the history of classical records to win a platinum disc in Germany: a clear case for an entry in the Guinness Book of records.

Had the famous record book existed in Vivaldi’s day, then the great Venetian Baroque composer would certainly have had his own entry: Vivaldi was not only a highly esteemed virtuoso, he was also the inventor of the violin concerto. Gifted with the ability to compose at breathtaking speed, he left some 450 concertos at his death, over half of them for violin.


Colourful stories of nature’s cycle

The four seasons are the most famous of Vivaldi’s violin concertos. As the title suggests, the concerto, cycle paints a colourful picture of the different events in nature’s annual cycle. Vivaldi based the concertos on four poems set in strict sonnet form(probably from his own pen). He transposed the verse line-by-line into music- an original concept that caught his contemporaries’attention and displayed considerable genius, for the composer managed to make the music ‘tell the story’ directly. In Spring we hear birdsong, murmuring streams and the mild south wind, while in the Summer the oppressive head builds up in the third movement to a thunderstorm, from which the shepherd seeks shelter with his flock. The third concerto, Autumn, depicts the hunt and the pleasures of drinking and merry-making, while in the winter the cold makes everyone’s teeth chatter, and the people in the Vivaldi’s imaginary village retreat to the fireplace, where the wind howls down the chimney, and wait for spring to return.

The hit as re-mix

Ten years have passed since Anne-Sophie Muter’s successful recording was first released: ten years where a lot has happened in the world of recording technology. The CD has become firmly established as the standard recording medium worldwide, and music-lovers everywhere have responded with changes in their listening habits and their expectations. The award of the platinum disk induced EMI’s sound technicians to reprocess the old 24-track recording and produce a digital re-mix: the re-mixing, incidentally, was done in Cologne’s Maarweg studios under the able direction of sound engineer Wolfgang Gulich, who was responsible for the recording sessions in Vienna in 1984. Through the use of digital filters, which didn’t even exist ten years ago, the new version sounds as fresh as if Anne-Sophie Muter and her mentor Herbert von Karajan had only just recorded Vivaldi’s colourful stories of the four seasons.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Barcode: 077774704328
  • Label Code: LC 0542
  • Matrix / Runout: CDC 747043 2 .3 :2:3. EMI SWINDON
  • Rights Society: DP