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Mozart’s Divertimento in E flat major

As Alfred Einstein writes in Mozart: His Character, His Work (and as excerpted in the notes to a Kennedy Center performance), his only completed string trio (there are fragments) shares with most divertimenti this six-movement format, but from that no lightness of tone should be understood – rather, “it is a true chamber-music work, and grew to such large proportions only because it was intended to offer … something special in the way of art, invention, and good spirits. … Each instrument is primus inter pares, every note is significant, every note is a contribution to spiritual and sensuous fulfillment in sound.” Einstein called it “one of his noblest works.”

Mozart’s Divertimento in E-flat major is “one of a kind,” according to the notes to an Emerson Quartet performance. “It is not only Mozart’s only finished composition for string trio – it also appears to be the first such work by any composer.” Though probably the first substantial work for the combination, it is not the first work written for string trio; there were works for violin, viola and cello written at least five years earlier, by Wenzel Pichl, and works for two violins and bass, probably based on the trio sonata, written much before that.

Movement 1 Adagio (approx. 12 min.)


2nd – 11 min.


third – 5 min.


fourth – 7 min.


fifth – 5 min.


sixth – 6 min.

Beethoven Devienne Haydn Hummel Its About Time LONG PLAYING SELECTIONS Mozart Schumann, Clara Women!

It’s About Time

About time that I posted some full compositions. You may have noticed that I tend to only present one movement from a Concerto or Symphony or Sonata; rather than all the movements. Invariably it’s the second movement –  due to my preference for slow, melodic, thoughtful, melancholic!, peaceful etc. I suppose in a way it’s not really fair to the composer not to present his/her entire statement.

Recently a person in my town asked if I ever posted entire compositions. He didn’t ask the question in a judgmental fashion, just politely inquired.  It has “niggled” at me ever since. So… Istvan … here’s a post for you!

(* I’ll place this posting in the Long Playing sections)

Francois Devienne (1759 – 1803) was known as “The French Mozart”

Francois Devienne – Bassoon sonata I in C major, Op. 24


Beethoven – Piano Sonata no. 23 Appassionata


Johann Nepomuk Hummel: One of the greatest of the ‘ignored and forgotten’ composers!

Hummel – Sextett Fur Blaser In F Major


Haydn – Symphony No. 104 In D Major (”London”)


Mozart – Piano Sonata No- 13


Clara Schumann, Robert’s wife – who decided late in life she just didn’t have what it takes to be a composer!

Hmmm … I beg to differ!

Clara Schumann Drei Romanzen, Op 22

Bassoon Beethoven Clarinet LONG PLAYING SELECTIONS Mozart Reicha Wind Instruments LONG PLAY

Wind for my Brother

Over the years developing this site my brother has been both my strongest critic, and at the same time my most supportive advocate! We’ve spent a lot of time talking about music and I’ve sent him CD’s and a USB flash drive with the music he likes.

These exchanges comparing our musical tastes came to a head the other day after I sent him the Utube link below. He decided that this genre was his musical manna! – Wind – Just the wind instruments. Quartets, quintets, sextets or a whole bunch at once! (Like Mozart’s piece for 13 wind instruments) The use of exclusively wind instruments has an interesting history. The gist of it seems to be that the patrons of the composers in the 17 and 18 hundreds who weren’t filthy rich! .. some of them could only afford to have a little in-house musical group; and they came to be known as Harmonie. At the same time the article notes that some street musicians of the time played in these ‘wind groups.’

Anyway here in order are: The Utube link to a delightful piece by Beethoven. The Wikipedia article and another much more detailed account of Harmoniemusik.  (* The next day: An important update) And finally  a Long Play selection of all wind lasting an hour and 12 minutes. Enjoy.

A very detailed link about Harmoniemusik

* A friend sent me an alternate version for the Mozart Serenade K361 and my brother and I both agree that’s it’s much better. Unfortunately my friend doesn’t know who it is playing! Anyway it will provide a lovely Intro to the long play.

Mozart’s Serenade For Winds K361 third movement


New Wind Instrument Long Play


Playlist: The first 3 movements of Beethoven’s Sextet for 2 clarinets, 2 French horns and 2 Bassoons

Wind quartet in E flat major (andante grazioso) by Anton Reicha.  Then Reicha‘s Wind quintet #2 in E flat maj. op 88 IV

Then 4 movements from Mozart’s Serenade for 8 wind instruments in E flat maj. KV 375

Followed by Beethoven’s quintet for Oboe, 3 French horns and Bassoon (all 3 movements)

Finally … Mozart’s Serenade K361 “Gran Partita” for 13 wind instruments: third, fourth, fifth and seventh movements.


The Glass Harmonica?!

I don’t think I’d actually heard a glass harmonica played until today whilst downloading some Mozart. Or I have heard it in the background and never investigated what the sound was. I wonder how widespread it’s use was in Mozarts time? or is now? What an unusual sound.

Here’s Mozart’s Adagio & Rondo in C minor, K.617: Adagio played with glass harmonica. (*it’s also recorded with piano instead of the harmonica)

Mozart’s Adagio & Rondo in C minor, K.617 I. Adagio


Here’s one being played on YouTube

Mozart Piano Very Special Mozart?

Very Special Mozart?

Renowned pianist Alfred Brendel has referred to Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 9, known as the Jeunehomme, as a “wonder of the world,” going so far as to assert that Mozart “did not surpass this piece in the later piano concertos.”

Later in the same article: How did Mozart, at age 21, find the burst of courage needed to write the No. 9, which pushes the boundaries of concerto convention and accepted harmonic complexity? Furthermore, after writing a great work, how does a composer move on to write pieces that are more mature but perhaps less ambitious?

Mozart Piano Concerto #9 / Second Movement

Piano concerto #9 second movement

Good Buddies - Mozart and Haydn Haydn Mozart Piano

Good Buddies – Mozart and Haydn

My most recent “obsession” has been with Haydn (*see the Post, “Heeer’s Haydn) – and in particular his piano concertos – which I wasn’t familiar with when I did the Heeeer’s Haydn post.

In the course of listening and researching I found out about the close relationship between Mozart and Haydn. They seemed to have formed a “mutual admiration society”! There are many quotes where they praised each others work and expressed a high personal regard for each other. Good buddies! (Haydn was crushed by the news of Mozart’s early death)

Regarding their piano concertos, there seems to be a concensus that Mozart went further, deeper and that his were the more accomplished. The elements I love in both of their piano concertos, you could describe as the ‘sublime’ / ‘spiritual’ / ‘lyrical’ or  contemplative. Just love that kind of piano. So here is one movement each from one of their Piano Concertos that express these qualities. Which one do you like most?!

Haydn P.C. #3 in F major. HOB XVIII. Second movement / Largo Cantibile

Haydn piano concerto in F major


Mozart’s P.C. #21 in C major KV 467 / Andante

Sorry! I think I’ve put Haydn at an immediate disadvantage! This piece by Mozart is SO beloved and SO well known, because of the film Elvira Madigan. I didn’t “rig” this in Mozart’s advantage on purpose!



Mozart for Linni Binni

Or should it be Linnie Binnie? Anyway dear sister-in-law – since you didn’t specify which movement of a Mozart Piano Concerto in D Minor; I’m going to assume it’s this one! Correct me (backchannel) if it’s not the one you long to hear, and I’ll find and post the correct movement. Regards to Robert.

Mozart Piano Concerto 20 in D Monor Kv466 / Romanze

Marooned with Mozart Mozart

Marooned with Mozart

So … you’re marooned on a desert island (but happen to have a solar powered CD player) and you have to pick one Classical composer’s work. A no-brainer right?! Gotta’ be Mozart. Extent of repertoire, ease of listening and that sense of “company” his music engenders.








How smart is your baby? How lovely is Mozart? Mozart

How smart is your baby? How lovely is Mozart?

Listening to Mozart = a smarter baby? I haven’t read the book but if it’s true, I’d put it down to his elemental rhythms and melodies matching the human brain’s wiring, thereby stimulating synapses to make connections earlier. (huh?)

To my ear this is perfectly “typical” Mozart. Enjoy – even if you don’t get smarter. (Piano concerto 11 K 413 second movement)