Update browser for a secure Made experience

It looks like you may be using a web browser version that we don't support. Make sure you're using the most recent version of your browser, or try using of these supported browsers, to get the full Made experience: Chrome, Firefox, Safari, or Edge.


Mozart’s Quartet in G minor for Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, K. 478

March 7, 2023

On this week’s lecture, resident lecturer Bruce Adolphe discusses Mozart’s Quartet in G minor for Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, K. 478. Featuring a performance by Wu Qian, piano; Alexander Sitkovetsky, violin; Paul Neubauer, viola; Mihai Marica, cello.


Download Transcript


Welcome to the Inside Chamber Music Podcast presented by the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center. I'm Bruce Adolphe. Resident Lecturer at CMS, where I started the lecture series in 1992. In 2011, we began livestreaming the lectures on our website. The audio for this podcast comes from the ever growing archive of videos made available live and on demand at ChamberMusicSociety.org.

We look at the music from a compositional perspective and find parallels in novels, plays and poetry. Plus, we explore historical context and with live musicians in the studio during the lectures, we experiment with performance issues. Today's podcast of Inside Chamber Music features Mozart's Quartet in G Minor for Piano, Violin, Viola and Cello, Kershaw 478 with pianist Wu Qian, Alexander Sitkovetsky, violin, Paul Neubauer, viola, and Mihai Marica, cello.

This was originally recorded on February two, 2022. Thank you. Thank you. It's great to see you here. And it feels wonderful to be back in the room with real people like you. I did do eight of these speaking to a camera lens, and at first I didn't like that. We almost put a laugh track to it, but we didn't.

I'm just testing this out now. Okay, good. So what I'm going to do today is a little bit unusual, even for me in terms of, it's a particular kind of lecture. The entire lecture is going to be a metaphor. I'm going to be using courtroom procedure to illuminate how Sonata form works in this particular piece by Mozart. And, you know, I always say that sonata form is so not a form.

That's the way kids talk now. It is so not a form. But what is it? It's a procedure. And one of the reasons that first movements by almost every piece by Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, so many other composers are in so-called sonata form and work. And it continues to be fresh and new and vital and extraordinary.

How is it possible that some form can do that? It's because it's like a courtroom procedure. This is my theory and I'm going to show that, in fact, this is a gavel. I'm going to make it clear. I'm going to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is, in fact, a parallel between this particular piece and courtroom procedure.

Even so far as to say that this is a murder trial. This Mozart, the first movement. Now, I'm not saying in case anyone is wondering, I am not going to say that Mozart thought this was a murder trial. I'm not going to say that Mozart thought about it in words at all. It's music. And in the end, you hear it only as music.

But this is a lecture. A lecture needs words. So I'm going to really go for the word thing and make sure that we cover every way that this can be looked at. And I do want to say something. I'll probably come back to this in the course of the talk.

I learned a lot by looking at this piece this way. In fact, there's one thing in it that, I'll get to it, but I discovered something about this piece of music only because I was looking at the courtroom idea. And when I get to that, I'll explain it. And it's something that is definitely in the music. It is not a metaphor. It's in the music.

But only when you have a kind of lawyer dash investigator mindset, do you notice certain kinds of things. Okay, so the piece begins like this. This is how it actually goes. (music)

Now right there we have the beginning of the case, the courtroom situation. I'm going to sing only one time and I'm not putting words to this whole thing, even though it is true that Mozart is very operatic and you could put words, and I have, to entire movements of some of his pieces, but in this case, I'm just going to do the first eight bars, which will be the same words twice in order to get the first point across.

You are the murderer. I was not there. I didn't do anything wrong, I swear. I am innocent. You are the murderer. I was not there. I didn't do anything wrong. It's swear it. I am innocent. Okay. Now believe me, that's it for the singing and the opera. But the idea there is that this statement, the opening statement is a unison statement.

It's everyone. All the strings in the piano playing the same notes. Just play the opening accusation. (music) Now, that is clearly the state versus the piano's response. Now, the piano is not always the defense and not always the defendant either. But in this case it is. It's fluid. It keeps changing. What if it weren't a major key?

It wouldn't be a murder trial. It'd be something else. Let's hear the opening phrase only. The first two bars in a major key. (music) No. No. Okay. Now that has to stay, it has to stay a minor. In fact, more importantly, this piece will be illuminated in interesting ways if you really pay attention to the E-flat and D. Now, play it again the way it's supposed to be, and the last two notes (singing) that's E-flat in D, just that phrase again. So the E-flat in D is going to be, in a way, the evidence.

It's the proof. It's kind of the smoking gun. We're going to follow it throughout the entire thing. Now we're going to continue with the prosecution. Let's see, bar six, seven, eight. After we hear that the prosecution makes a few points and then we get to the defense. So let's hear the prosecution. Actually, let's start at the very beginning and go...

I'll stop you. In fact, I'll tell you now, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16. Right where that rest is will stop at 16 from the beginning to there. (music) Rest. I mean, I rest my case. The prosecution is done at that point for now. You might know that throughout this, the E and the D flat have been reiterated many, many times.

I'm just going to lead, okay, I'll scare you away. We have this. That's the D that is repeated. And then the E-flat. Sorry. And this ends on the D. So the D and the E-flat is a big deal. Now, Mozart puts two beats rest right there. It's perfect. He's doing it for structural reasons. The prosecution's done. The accusation is over.

It's time for something else. So he puts two bars of rest. The next thing that happens, are we ready? Is that the defense suggests a change of venue key. (music) Objection. Overruled. Okay. Now, isn't that exactly what it sounds like? Because it is basically that. There's a suggestion in the strings of that it moved to another key, a change of venue.

This has been in G minor. It is unfair to listen to this tune only in G minor because it will be guilty. The tune will be guilty in G Minor. The D-flat and the E-flat, there's no chance for this tune to survive in G minor. If he's going to be defended, the tune has to be heard in B-flat major.

It's the only chance. So they're suggesting a move to B-flat, major. And the objection to the piano, which is in C minor. Let's hear the objection again. (music) Doesn't convince the judge. In fact, it helps move it towards B flat because it's part of the circle of fifths. So then the judge says, okay, and we are now this little bit, the overruled that you just played.

Let's hear that again. This brings us into the key of B-flat Major. (music) Now the defense begins the opening statement for the defense. And I want you to listen carefully, because a lot is happening here. It is all music we've heard before, but now completely differently. You've heard this evidence, but not like this. (music) Okay. Okay. Thank you. Now the tune...

I have to go to the piano. Sorry. The tune that you heard was this. (music) Remember originally we had in G minor. If it were in B-flat minor, it would be... If it were in B-flat, major in a normal way, it would be... That's not what it is. It's... This is a very good defense lawyer. If you ever need a defense lawyer, public defender, whatever, this is the way to go because the tune, instead of doing it like this, which would just sound like I'm just saying the same thing you are in major.

Mozart who is playing all parts, really takes the B-flat and the F and puts the F on top, so inverts the interval instead of (singing) it's (singing) and then it reaches up. It's the same shape, same rhythm, but different notes. It's the same harmonies too. But it's rethought. And how innocent is that?

Now, remember that it could have been B-flat minor. Keep that note in your head. Let's go back and play the beginning of the defense starting at bar 23. And I want you to hear, does anything happen to make you think of B-flat minor? Even for one note. (music) Paul did it. One note. Now, this is one of my favorite things about a great piece like this.

One note in the viola changes the whole phrase, the meaning of it, the context, and what you're thinking about. Now, if you're not thinking about a courtroom drama, it doesn't matter. You're listening to music in B-flat major, and there's one note in B-flat minor. Just one note in B-flat minor. But that one note is the note that would have been the only note necessary to make the theme in- you don't have to leave.

I'll play it up here. That one note. Sorry. That G-flat that Paul played there is the only thing you need to refer to the tune in the version you are not hearing. It's incredibly brilliant. So when you talk about a classical piece of music, that is phenomenal because every note matters. This is a perfect example of every note saying a lot and Mozart is one of the greatest at doing something like that.

So let's just hear that passage again and keep going, because what's going to happen next, and I think you'll hear this, is they approach the bench. I don't mean the piano bench. I mean I approach that bench. But it sounds like the lawyers are approaching the bench and then you hear an argument which will be between the defense and the prosecution.

It will sound like it's between the first violin and the viola playing the tune. So let's go back to exactly where we were 23 and keep going. (music) Approaching the bench. Okay, great. Now, why is that an argument? They're playing the same theme. Well, it's an argument because the violin, just play your your 37 and 38. Is clearly in B-flat and it's major.

Now, the viola is also in the same key, but the two notes, the violas playing are E-flat and D. The viola, remember, played that G flat. The viola realized that this is a spin on the evidence. It's not the way it really is. So then the viola is continually playing the two notes, but it's not working because it's in the wrong key.

So let's just hear the viola two notes at... (music) Yeah. Now those notes... It's the E-flat and the D over and over. So now let's hear the argument. Just violin and viola starting at 37. (music) Okay, great. And then what happens at 45? If I could just hear the piano at 45. (music) Okay, now, that's exactly the same thing. It's what we just heard, but it's quiet and there's a lot of music over it.

They're still talking. So what is that? It's got to be the court stenographer. I'm so glad we don't need a laugh track here. Okay. There are lots of E-flat and Ds in the bass. For example, with the piano. We'll just play bars. 43 and 45, just piano. Okay. And we have the E-flat in the D. (singing) And then, for example, bar 49, 50, 51, 52, the piano. (music) That's also in the cello.

Now, in fact, just one more really fun E-flat, D, which is, we're about to hear, the piano run the arpeggio, 54, 55, 56 the way Mozart wrote it. So the high note is E-flat and the end of the run is D, so it's E-flat. D You could play that and he could have written it many different ways. That arpeggio, the fact that it goes up to a high E-flat and down to the D is a deliberate emphasis on an E-flat and D, which we've been hearing over and over and over.

Could you play it so the same exact chords, but not in that position? (music) Yeah, there you go. It's the same arpeggio. But instead of going up to the E-flat and ending on the D, it goes up to an F and ends on a B flat. It's much simpler. Now here comes the part. This is my favorite part. There's a second theme.

Now we're talking the way people often talk about sonata form. There's a second theme No one has ever learned anything from calling something a second theme. I don't get the point. Yeah, it's the second theme. So it comes second. That's it. All right. When I first gave this talk, this is not the very first time. I've been refining it.

I have actually given it for the Federal Bar Association and for them, I called it a bar by bar association. I can call it that for you too. Do you like that? Okay. So I came to this spot when I was first preparing this concept and I looked at this second theme. Let's listen to it in a second.

And I wasn't sure how does that fit into the courtroom procedure other than being a new theme? Let's hear the new theme starting right at 57. Yeah, 57, everybody. (music) Okay, great. RIght there. Okay. That's the second theme. So ask yourself, I'm not going to ask you individually, but ask yourself, how does that fit with what we've heard so far? What's that about and how does that fit in this discussion?

Why is it admissible? Why didn't the judge say, "Throw it out? It has nothing to do with this." You can't throw it out. It has to have a lot to do with it. So I remember when I first started preparing this concept of the courtroom procedure, I said to myself, "If I can't figure out a legitimate, interesting way that this truly does relate to the music we've heard so far, I'm going to throw the whole concept out."

So first, if you're looking at the page, which you're not, there are sforzandi. A sforzando, in case you're a non-musician, you can leave now. No, if there's a sforzando, it means a sudden forte, a subito forte suddenly loud in the context. How loud, that's up to the players to make a good choice.

But it is an accent that sticks out. Mozart doesn't do them a lot. We've had a few already and every one of the ones we've heard, they're very subtle, have been on the note or the chord E-flat going to D. We've heard a few of them, but here that's not what they are. Now, can you play the same thing without any accents or sforzandos? (music)

Okay, no, let's just do that because it's the same thing. Sorry. Believe it or not, the accent that Mozart wrote in here was changed in early editions because editors and publishers thought it was a mistake. Could you play that again? Just piano with the accent quite clearly. And you can see why maybe someone thought, "What if that doesn't belong there?"

They moved it. You know that they put it over the f sharp? Have you ever seen an edition like that? There are. You can still buy them, unfortunately. Start again. And if you wouldn't mind putting the accent where it doesn't belong, which is on the F sharp D in the middle of bar 58. (music) Now the problem with that accent is you don't need it because it falls there anyway.

That's where a normal accent would be. But quite a few editions of this piece have the accent in the wrong place. So I was looking at these sforzandos thinking they must be a clue to the meaning or just Mozart just put them in for fun, to make the rhythm interesting. Mozart uses everything. Everything has a purpose.

Everything has a reason. You don't always know what it is, but if you look, you can find out. So let's do it. Just piano the way it's supposed to go. And I'm going to conduct and say a few things and then I'll explain to you how it relates to the opening. (music) Three, four, one, two, three, four. One, two, three, four, one.

So what an accent like that does is it makes you feel like that's the downbeat. So now do it again and I'll count the way the accents are. One, two, one, two, three, four, one, one, two, three, four, one. So the rhythm that you get in the last sforzando is... (singing). You are the murder.

It's the same rhythm as (singing). That is hidden in there. It is actually disguised in the second theme, but he puts his sforzando in to make you hear that rhythm. Now I'm going to ask you to do something slightly different than you probably ever would in a concert for everybody. Well, it's really just the piano that needs to do it. Play it as written, but make it clear that you know that that sforzando is, "You are the murderer."

Bring it out more than you would. (music) Now it's clear as can be. (singing) Who knows. Maybe Mozart played it like that. I don't know. But there you have, this is one of the most exciting feelings in analysis, in doing music analysis that I've ever had, which is to say these sforzandos changes everything.

This sforzando puts... Was that just me? No. Okay. Just a second and then we can go. Okay. This sforzando puts the emphasis in the wrong place and makes you hear a rhythm by reference that starts the beginning. It means that I could continue with the courtroom procedure because in fact it was better than I expected.

Mozart put in there a disguised spin on the evidence. It makes me very happy. Now he does it over and over. I found a few more of these. That's the most extreme. But the very next thing, bar 65, let's just hear some of that, everybody, at bar 65. (music) Okay. Now, that sounds completely innocent. There's no way to say that that relates to the opening theme.

However, when that comes back much later in G minor, let's see... You know where it is. Okay. (inaudible) Yeah. (music) Okay, thank you. So once it gets back into the hands of the prosecution, we have, again... So the first time you hear it, it's an innocent tune in B flat. But when it comes back into the G minor prosecution key, it has the outline of the G and the D in the E-flat that we've been waiting for.

So he lets you wait a very long time for that one. Now, there are a few other places that have lots of Ds and E-flats. There's another theme that begins E-flat, D. That theme starts at 86, 87, and 88. First violin. Let's have everybody do it right at 88. (music) Okay, great. Now, I don't know if you heard that in the context of the courtroom procedure, but the tune starts E-flat, D and the rhythm (singing).

That answers it each time is the rhythm that reminds us of, "I was not there. I didn't do it." It's the denial rhythm. So we have an E-flat, D in a more innocent sounding B-flat major and the very smoothed out, not dotted B-flat major version of the denial. Let's hear it thinking about that. This is, again, the defense is saying what happened at the opening and making it into simple pretty music.

So it is obviously not a guilty situation. (music) Now the violin has it. Okay. Now, I hope when the violin came in, you heard something strange. For one moment there was one note. It's the same note the viola played. One note in minor again. It was that same g flat that Paul first played. Perhaps that will refresh your memory.

So that G flat does not belong in B-flat major. Can you play your little thing with that again? Yeah. It's just the G flat that reminds you of the whole guilty problem. Otherwise everything would be fine. So let's hear that again now that we are thinking of that again, starting right at 88. (music) And he does it again in a moment.

Okay. Now, what does that sound like in the context of a courtroom situation? We've just had everything smoothed over in B flat, rhythmically smoothed over. We've had an incredible disguise of the opening theme in B-flat major, rhythmically. Hidden with accents, slightly revealing the truth. We've had G Flats appearing that show us that B-flat minor is not too far away, and that maybe certain people in the jury box, perhaps a violist is sitting there who knows that it's in B-flat minor.

Well, what happens here is the defense has stopped, and it is a time for cross-examination of the prosecution. Listen to this music starting at 96. What you're going to hear is the defense concluding and resting, and then the prosecution stands up and walks to the witness stand. (music) Okay. And now here we are back with the prosecution. Things are getting intense.

The prosecution realizes that the defense has done an extremely good job of disguising that motif. And only people who seem to be aware of those G-flats have any clue that this is not the truth. Well, it is time for an expert witness. The prosecution goes into the key of C minor right now, which is related to G minor.

It's minor. That's the main thing. And brings us a kind of a new theme which has the original theme in it. But he needs an expert witness to look at this and explain what's going on. So let's just first hear this new theme that begins at 104. And yeah. (music) Okay, that's the new theme that the prosecution has brought in front of a jury.

There are several ways in which that relates to the guilty motif in the opening music, but it's complicated. So I'm going to bring in, not a homicide investigator, but a harmony investigator and harmony, you know, harmony New York. I would like to bring up an inspector, a detective who has written a report that he'd like to read.

Your honor, I've taken the liberty of preparing a statement concerning the evidence." Remember, this was written for April Fool's Day, this part. "It is written in professional detective musical jargon-oidinal parlance. So you will forgive me if it is totally incomprehensible. If you look at the music here, the intervalic stratigraphy connoting, the introchromatic self-reference of thematic disposition or regrouping, your honor, around places, the motific fragment in question, in a subtextual condition in the harmaphonic fabric, which fact becomes evident by the aural vocalization of an isolated linear counterpontal line.

In other words, it's hidden in there, and I can sing it for you." So you can play that again. I'm going to sing it. (music) (singing) You see that? I mean, sorry. You see that? You know, whenever I've been on juries in New York, there's always somebody saying defendant instead of defendant. I just had to say that.

So there you have the (singing). In slow motion as the harmonic background to what's going on. But we also have, she's going to play it for us in the second, that the tune starts (singing) but then it drops (singing) And then it rises again. It drops a ninth and rises another ninth. Minor ninths. Minor ninths are minor seconds inverted.

And so this E-flat, D, if you invert it, that's a minor ninth. So when it goes... (music) We've dropped all the way and then it goes from here. You'll hear that in a moment. So what Mozart has done is take the minor second, which is so important here and makes him into minor ninths And that fits with the idea that he inverted the theme in B-flat Major to begin with.

He likes to invert things here, but they're still the same music. So let's hear that theme again. But this time, listen to the ninths. I'll try to point them out. (music) Still, the theme. Now it's dropping. That was the ninth. Now here comes the ninth. All right. Now, this is important evidence. So what happens now is the evidence is passed to the jury.

Let's say it's a photograph, okay? A photograph of a theme by Mozart. And it's passed to the jury. This is the jury. The piano participates in the jury as well. And they're passing what you just heard around and around. Let's hear that starting, you know where. 112. (music) Okay. Great place to stop. All that's been happening there is harmonically it's being passed.

This chord progression is moving and each time it moves through a key, we hear the entire theme dropping a ninth the way it was stated in the piano. This does sound like an examination, one at a time, of everybody involved. They all get to play it. They all take a good look at it. And when they're done, they pass it back to the foreman who hands it to the judge, and that's it for now.

But they all got a really good look at that. And if you want to look at it later in the jury room, that's fine, but you have to ask for it. Okay. By the way, I hope you've all put your cell phones in the box over there. Okay. Thank you. Now, right after we hear that, we get first a scale that has the interval, the important interval of the minor ninth in the piano.

If you want to play that 133 in the piano. (music) And when the piano arrives on that minor ninth, which is a D to an E-flat. Thank you. We're heading back D to C sharp. There's no reason that I said that. I just wanted to see what you would do. Yeah, I just wanted to mess you up.

She's paying very close attention. You could be a court stenographer if this doesn't work out. In fact, you've got the digitary thing happening, paying close attention. Okay, so when the piano plays that D up to E-flat, right at that moment, the theme comes back, but it's not in the right key. And then it comes back again, but not in the right key.

And eventually it comes back not only in the right key, but just as it was in unison with the state, stating the actual charge. Let's hear that starting right at that bar. 133 Where the piano does the scale up to the d, d flat. (music) Now, here it is. Okay, great. So what you heard there is something of, the first ninth was a minor ninth.

Then as it goes through keys, two of them were major nonths. But that's because we're in different keys. Then we had an overlap, what's called a stretto in music. A stretto is an Italian word, stretto. See, now, you know, it's Italian, where, if you're walking down a street and the street gets narrower, you end up falling on top of each other.

That's what happens in music is it gets narrow. So a narrowing happens. Let's hear that at 138 39, and 140. 138 (music) Now that's a classic use of stretto. Kind of baroque, which is it comes in right at the last moment before the return. Now when it returns, this piece is far from over. From a classical music point of view we've gotten to, we finished the entire development and we need to have a recapitulation.

But what is a recapitulation? It's a summary. Where it's reviewing what we've heard and what we're trying to understand, again. So, this is the prosecution's summary. There is such a thing and this is what it is. Things will be different. They're never the same. The idea that a recapitulation is exactly the same is never true in the great works, especially in composers like Mozart and Beethoven and Haydn.

It's always different in some way than you expect, aside from the keys, which also, it has to end up in the right key. Well, so it starts off exactly the same. You're going to hear the unison prosecution stating the charge, "You are the murderer." The pianist, still as the defendant says, "No, I didn't do anything." And then they state it again.

And, "No, I didn't." It's exactly the same. But then this time the jury has heard a lot. And you will hear the jury start to talk about this quietly and get louder and louder because the jury is not so sure any more. So let's hear starting right at bar 141. I might talk a little bit while you're playing. (music) Denial. Again.

A little weaker.

The jury whispers. Now, at this point, the jury, the... Thank you. Okay. It's the music of approaching the bench again. But what's going to happen is we're going to hear a lot of the same music. So I won't go over that because it's the same thing. But certain things change because of the key relationships. One of the interesting things that happens is there's what's called the deceptive cadence at a crucial moment.

And it brings us something very important. So if we can hear starting at... I'll skip a little bit. Let's start at 157 and I'll make a big gesture when the deceptive cadence happens and we'll take a look at that. (music) Right there. Okay. It got quiet when I went like that because it's deceptive. And the difference is, I'll just play one thing. (music) That doesn't happen.

It only happens in the right hand. But this goes that's a deceptive cadence and that's so that we can get this. It brings back, that's an E-flat. So Mozart has put a deceptive cadence exactly where it's possible to give you an E-flat going to a D as part of the deceptive cadence. He's still at it. All right. We can move on a little further?

Now, the prosecution is going to take a look at that second theme. Remember the second theme that had (singing) in B-flat major with a different sforzando? Listen to what it sounds like in Minor. It changes it completely. 178. (music) Okay. Now, this is truly amazing. The theme in minor means that the accents and the high notes of the theme...

Yeah. (music) It starts on a D. Sorry. (singing) There it is. So the E-flat and the D are the high notes of the theme. So when it was in major, we only had the rhythm. Not those pitches, but once it's in minor, we have the rhythm and the E flat and the D sitting on top. I'm impressed.

I mean, Mozart is really, he's really good. There's no question about it. That's something a doctor of mine once said to me in an examination about 30 years ago. He wanted to talk about music and he said, "You know, Mozart." And then an hour later, he said, "Mozart is a really good composer." Okay. Very good doctor, though.

So now let's skip to bar 212 because, again, the music is transposed from B-flat major, which was the defense to G minor, which is the prosecution. And again, it illuminates things because they become more related to the smoking gun. So let's start right at 212. (music) Okay. So what you heard there was the same as in B-flat, but this time he did not need to change a note, the G-flat to give you the feeling of it being possibly a minor because these notes are E-flat and D again. They're back. E-flat and D, remember when we talk about two notes being so important there only are 12 in Western music. The 12 notes.

So it's unbelievable the variety that, and the brilliance of these, huge body of music that we look at. But here the E-flat and the D are completely controlling our thought process. So we finally get to the final statement. It's like a coda. Now, Mozart's form is so not a form is a little different here than it usually is.

And I think it's because the drama, even though he wasn't thinking of courtroom drama, probably, there weren't a lot of courtroom dramas going on at that time. But there were some. There were judges. They didn't have juries yet, but they had judges and they had courts. But anyway, we get something really amazing. How many of you know the expression a Perry Mason moment? (music)

That's why we have Paul in the Chamber Music Society. Yes. That was the theme from Perry Mason, which is clear from the laughter. That's something we missed when we didn't have a live audience. Yes, the Perry Mason, if you don't know who he is, I'll just quickly say Perry Mason was a TV lawyer. Before that, it was a novel, series of novels. Then it was a series of movies. Then it was a television show.

Then it was another television show. Now it's back in a new kind of series. But he was a lawyer who, at least between the fifties and sixties, when it was on as a television program, he never lost a case. Apparently, I looked it up. There were three cases that he seemed to lose, but then he won it later.

So it's okay.

But how did he never lose a case? The Perry Mason moment means there was a confession almost every time. He would say, "Did you not?" And they would say, "I did it. I did it." Every time. Or he would say, "You, in the witness box, you're not the murderer. You are." And then the person, "I did it." My daughter's going to be a public defender, it turns out, and she's not a fan of Perry Mason.

But anyway, although he was often defending people. Okay, so there is a confession that you can hear. It is a Perry Mason moment and being Mozart, he only needs one note to do it. So let's start at bar 224. You wait for that note. (music) Okay. Isn't that amazing? That's an E-flat. I could ask you to do this, but I'm not.

So we heard that every time, but it was always followed by (music) like backing away and the scale. But this time... So, instead of the D backing away, we have the D going up to E-flat. That completely proves beyond the shadow of a doubt that the D and the E-flat were the point of the piece, that they were always resting on the top of every theme or hidden inside it.

And then it is a confessional note that he saved- he could have done that at the beginning, but he would have blown the confession. The story only works this way. I wonder, there's no way to know whether Mozart revised this. Maybe he had an E-flat early on and then he realized, "Oh, no, no, no, that's ruining the story right from the beginning." Maybe he didn't have a E-flat at the end, and then it suddenly occurred to him. We'll never know that.

But the fact is that he was so careful that every note, whether it's in major or minor, has a part of the story that it tells. From the G flat in the viola, the G-flats here, the E-flats where they come back transposed. And when they're not there, the rhythm is changed by sforzandos to change the shape of the phrase in order to refer back to the original.

It's totally amazing. Now, as soon as the piano confesses with that E-flat, the jury goes crazy. They start talking to each other. They get all riled up and you can hear that the jury has decided that the theme or whatever is guilty. And how do we know? Well, there's no room for the denial. We have (singing)

There's not (singing) That is gone. It's been wiped out. There's no chance anymore. So let's hear the whole thing from 224 to the end. You'll hear the confession, the jury, basically the verdict and the fact that it's over. (music) Did you hear how the denial rhythm is incorporated into the final phrase as if, "Forget that. It's over." Because it's linked to the theme.

Every detail supports the idea of the piece. I said I would prove without a shadow of a doubt that there's a parallel. But the parallel is not meant to say that, as I mentioned, that Mozart was thinking of the courtroom procedure. But it does illuminate fact that Mozart's storytelling is so perfect and so rich and complex that it actually fits into a courtroom trial.

So that the logic of the piece, that's the thing. The logic of the piece fits so well into the metaphor of a courtroom procedure down to single notes. All the way through. The removal of (singing) removal of that at the end means that that denial that opposition is gone. So he heard it as opposition. He wrote it as opposition. And he knew it had been proved wrong or conquered or demolished and takes it away.

It's an amazing accomplishment, this piece. And the fact is, I happened to just pick this one when I was first looking to look at the metaphor of courtroom procedure. It happens over and over. Now, they work a lot better in minor keys because you get the sense of criminal court. But there are many pieces in the major key that are sonata forms that would just be civil court and it would be completely fine.

Even some of the lighter ones by Clemente, may be just a fender bender, but, still, they go to court. And now (bangs gavel). I love this thing. Now we're going to hear the first movement straight through. They're not going to play any repeats because the repeats will make the structure of the piece harder to follow. So it's going to be the exact courtroom thing that we've looked at straight from the first accusation to the guilty verdict. (music)

Next week, if you're here, there'll be great. Tchaikovsky and Mozart returns secretly in the Tchaikovsky. Thank you, guys.

We hope you enjoyed the podcast visit ChamberMusicSociety.org to watch videos of these lectures as well as masterclasses and concert performances. And while you're there, check out the calendar of upcoming Chamber Music Society events in New York and around the world. See you next time.