"The third volume of radio recordings with the Amadeus Quartet is dedicated to works of its eponym. From the very beginning, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s string quartets were a matter of the heart for the Amadeus Quartet. During the ensemble’s long career, which lasted for nearly forty years, the great majority of its concert programmes contained at least one work by Mozart. It is not widely known that the Amadeus Quartet made studio recordings for the Berlin broadcasting corporation RIAS every year for nearly two decades. These previously unreleased Mozart recordings from the archives of Deutschlandradio Kultur, the legal successor to RIAS, were made during the quartet’s first ten years. They feature eight of the ten great string quartets written during Mozart’s mature period and show the ensemble at a very high technical and musical level, even at that early stage of its career. The great attention to detail and highly controlled form, in combination with great expression, create the prerequisite for musical spontaneity. These recordings are also of particular interest as they document the Amadeus Quartet at different levels in its reading of Mozart.
In the first studio recordings of 1950 and 1951 the ensemble’s surprisingly unusual and experimental interpretational approach opened up hitherto unknown expressive possibilities. This edition is complemented by recordings of Mozart’s four great string quintets. The second viola part is played by the South-African-born Cecil Aronowitz. He was occasionally referred to as the fifth member of the Amadeus Quartet as he was nearly always engaged when a second viola was needed. Three of the four string quintets were recorded in the studio in one single recording session in 1953 – given the high musical quality of these tapes, this is proof of the extraordinary standard of the ensemble, able to lay down a recording more or less straight away. Another peak is the recording of Mozart’s clarinet quintet with Heinrich Geuser, one of the leading clarinettists of his time."