Recorded on 07/01/2008, uploaded on 08/12/2009
Musician's or Publisher's Notes
The Serenade No. 9 in D major, often called by its nickname “Posthorn,” was written during August 1779 and intended for the graduation ceremony of the University of Salzburg. The piece takes its nickname from it use of the posthorn, a valveless horn that in former days was used to signal the arrival or departure of a mail coach, that occurs during the course of the second minuet.
Comprised of seven movements, the Serenade is scored for a typical Classical-era orchestra of two each of flutes, oboes, bassoons, horns and trumpets, timpani and the usual strings, with the addition of the posthorn and a piccolo (flautino) as solo instruments in the second minuet. The Serenade opens with a majestic introduction but quickly gives way to an exuberant Allegro and a first movement of near symphonic proportions. The concertante third movement features the woodwinds of the ensemble. Both pairs of flutes and oboes take on individual solo lines. Even the two bassoons, which for most of the movement provide added support to the bass line, occasionally find themselves in the spotlight with the flutes and oboes. Quite remarkably, all six instruments take part simultaneously in a unified cadenza towards the end of the movement. The following Rondeau also features the wind instruments in solo passages. An Andantino in D minor momentarily supplants the usual lighthearted mood of a serenade with melancholy. Following the rather serious Andantino, the second minuet returns to the blithe tone of the earlier movements and features the piccolo and posthorn as soloists in its two trio sections. Finally, the energetic Presto finale, passing by in a dizzying rush of notes, brings the Serenade to a joyous close. Joseph DuBose
Courtesy of The International Festival-Institute at Round Top
Located in historic Round Top, Texas, The James Dick Foundation for the Performing Arts and its sole project, The International Festival-Institute at Round Top, were founded in 1971 by world-renowned concert pianist James Dick. Begun with a handful of gifted young pianists in rented space on the town square, the project is now an internationally acclaimed European-styled music institute for aspiring young musicians and distinguished faculty. Over a thirty eight year period and with the help of its patrons and friends, The James Dick Foundation for the Performing Arts has developed superb year round education and performance programs.
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