Friday, 5 September 2008

161. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Clarinet Quintet (1789)


Title: Sabine Meyer Plays Mozart
Performers: Sabine Meyer, members of Vienna String Sextet
Year: 1988
Length: 34 minutes


The clarinet is a beautiful instrument and Mozart had a real touch for it, it is hard to find two more beautiful pieces of music than the Larghetto here and the Adagio in the Clarinet Concerto that we will have in the nearish future.

Even if the plaintive quality of the Clarinet is better explored in the slow movements, the faster ones are equally impressive. This is also extremely influential music up until today. It sounds in fact quite modern, again the Larghetto is a particular example of this, it sounds like the soundtrack for The English Patient, something made for a Merchant Ivory film.

The whole thing is delicate, beautiful and delightful and above all immensely touching. A truly indispensable piece of Mozart music and, for one of the earliest pieces for solo clarinet, amazingly developed in its exploration of its capabilities.

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

There are a number of similarities between this quintet and Mozart's Clarinet Concerto. Both are in the same key of A major and were written for the same soloist, Anton Stadler. Both pieces are written for the basset clarinet which has an extended lower range. Also, the first theme of the first movement of each piece begins with a falling major third. Also, both the second movements are in the same key (D major) and have similar character, although they have different tempo markings. There is a direct quotation of two bars in the clarinet line in the second movement of the Concerto of that in the Quintet.

Sabine Meyer plays the Larghetto:

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