Music: Elegant Thunderer

Typecasting is a hazard not only for actors but for pianists. Yet for listeners it has certain advantages. There is always a little extra pleased surprise when a celebrated Beethoven thunderer like Viennese Pianist Alfred Brendel also proves a fine interpreter of Mozart, as he just has in this summer's Mostly Mozart Festival at New York's Philharmonic Hall. Folding his gawky body (6 ft. 1½ in., 164 lbs.) down on the piano stool like some large, clumsy bird, Brendel at times brought an almost wren-like elegance to the formalized passion of Mozart's Piano Concerto No. 17 in G Major (K. 453).

Even...

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