LSM Newswire

Monday, April 7, 2014

Jacques Israelievitch and Christina Petrowska Quilico perform all Mozart Violin and Piano Sonatas in One Day

Sunday, May 4 at Toronto’s Gallery 345

Violinist Jacques Israelievitch and pianist Christina Petrowska Quilico perform The Complete Mozart Violin Sonatas Sunday, May 4 at Gallery 345, at 345 Sorauren Ave. (south of Dundas, between Lansdowne and Roncesvalles; on-street parking only).   It is believed to be a first for Toronto to hear all 28 sonatas performed live in one day.

The marathon will be divided into four concerts, at 11 a.m., and 1, 3 and 5 p.m., with only a short break in between.  Tickets, cash only, at the door, are $20 for each, or all four for $50; students $10 for one, $25 for four.  Reservations can be made by e-mailing

Details on each concert, along with bios and other information is available at 

Why perform all the Mozart violin and piano sonatas in one day?  Jacques Israelievitch responds, “When Edmund Hillary was asked why he climbed Mount Everest he replied: ‘Because it’s there!’  Playing the sonatas in one day allows the listener to hear the evolution of the form as the composer goes from featuring mostly the piano to making the violin gradually the equal of the piano.  

“The earlier sonatas are generally simpler, as Mozart honed his craft. They evolve into works of greater complexity and depth. The performance itself requires a lot of stamina. I am fortunate in having a piano partner who is up to the task.”

Christina Petrowska Quilico admits, “When Jacques first suggested doing this, I read through what I thought were all the sonatas and thought, ‘That’s not so hard.  I can do this!’ Then I discovered that was only half the sonatas…and the second half were really a lot trickier! But we have had a good time pushing each other to master them, and I think listeners will enjoy them.”

In preparation, the two musicians are doing a lot of stretching exercises.

Mozart (1756-1791) began writing these sonatas at age seven, publishing his first ones in 1764 and his last in 1788. Beethoven was particularly inspired in his own violin-piano sonatas by two of Mozart’s – the early and profound K. 304 in E minor, written in 1778, not long after the death of Mozart’s mother; and the second-last, K. 526 in A (1787).

Internationally renowned as individual artists, Petrowska Quilico and Israelievitch formed their duo at York University in 2008, after Israelievitch joined the faculty. They have given concerts of French Impressionist music and new Canadian works, among other things. Last November, as music director of the Koffler Chamber Orchestra, Maestro Israelievitch conducted a concert of Canadian women composers, in which Petrowska Quilico was soloist in piano concertos by Violet Archer and Heather Schmidt.

This is Israelievitch’s third single-composer-in-a-day marathon. He has performed all 10 Beethoven violin and piano sonatas as well as the complete Brahms sonatas for violin and viola at Gallery 345 and in the U.S.

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