I don't remember ever having heard Chopin's variations on "La ci darem la mano" from Mozart's Don Giovanni, Op. 2, until I heard a snippet of it on The Schumanns--Their Lives and Music, the latest Teaching Company course I'm "taking." Apparently, after hearing this piece, Robert Schumann reviewed it, writing, "Hats off, gentlemen. A genius!"

And Chopin wasn't even famous yet.

These are delightful. I'm glad I have now "discovered" them for myself. Better late than never. Hear snippets for yourself (Tracks 7 through 13) here.


Emrah said…
That lovely duet was among the pieces I have sung for my graduation. Zerlina's melodic lines are pretty interesting from a harmonic point of view, since they do not resolve to the tonic, but returns from the leading note back to start (if I remember correctly), which indicates her dilemma whether she should go with Don Giovanni or ignore his seducing attitude and keep her faithfulness.

The Complete Chopin Edition of Naxos with an exhaustive 15-CD set is highly recommendable. The pianist, Idil Biret is from Turkey, the most famous one of her generation. And she is the first in the world who attempted to record the entire piano repertory of Chopin. I'd also recommend her recordings of the complete Beethoven symphonies transcribed for the piano, released under the same label.
Waterfall said…
Yes, I love this duet, though I have never had the opportunity to sit and analyze it. Very interesting! I got to see Don Giovanni performed at the Brevard Music Center in North Carolina a few years ago and enjoyed it.
Waterfall said…
Oops, I meant to add also that I don't own any Idil Biret recordings (yet), but really enjoy her Chopin recordings on

Popular Posts