Daryl’s Program Notes for 10/27/19
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791)
Adagio K580a. for Cor Anglais and String Trio
This is a short fragment written in 1789. Mozart used the theme for his beautiful and well known motet “Ave verum corpus”. The Cor anglais (English horn) was invented around 1720 and sounds a fifth lower than the oboe. The name derives possibly from a mistranslation of a Middle German word meaning either English or angelic, or because it’s predecessor looked like the horns we see mediaeval angels playing in old paintings.
Flute Quartet No. 3 in C major, K. 285b, is the last of three quartets written for the amateur flautist Ferdinand De Jean and was composed between 1781 and 1782. Alberto Ginastera (1916-1983)
Ginastera was one of the most important Latin American classical composers. He began music lessons at age 7 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. His talent provided him with the opportunity to study in the United States, where he heard music of Bartók, Copland, Hindemith, Stravinsky, and Schoenberg. Ginastera’s music reflects their influence on his incorporation of folkloric material such as the music of the gauchos and the zamba (3 count) dance rhythm. The Duo for Flute and Oboe received a review by Virgil Thompson in the New York Herald Tribune who said: “The piece is poetically imaginative in expression, gay, varied and most ingeniously ornate.”
Divertimento in E-flat major, for violin, viola, and cello, K. 563 (1788)
This piece has become one of the favorite examples of great chamber music repertoire for small ensemble. The term “Divertimento” was considered music of light entertainment. Mozart took the form and composed six movements of complexstructure and emotional depth alongside what Albert Einstein described as “good spirits.” Mozart wrote the music for his Masonic lodge brother Johann Michael Puchberg, who was providing unreimbursed financial support. Mozart himself played the viola part when it was premiered in 1789.