Horn Concerto No. 4


Mozart, W A


1st movement – 9 mins 24 secs
2nd movement – 2 mins 40 secs
3rd movement – 4 mins 27 secs


Flute, oboe, clarinet in B flat, French horn in F and bassoon


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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, 1757 – 1792, was a child genius and prodigy. He was composing from very early childhood and could play the piano brilliantly equally early. One of his earliest compositions was Ah! Vous dirai-je, maman (Mother, if I could tell you) which has been corrupted into Twinkle Twinkle Little star. Whilst the theme of this is straight forward, the variations Mozart wrote certainly were not. Mozart produced a staggering amount of music in his short life which was blighted by mental illness and alcoholism. As well as 41 symphonies, 27 piano concerti, 22 operas, 5 violin concerti, 4 horn concerti and 7 other wind concerti, 36 violin sonatas and a shed load of chamber and other music (marches, minuets, religious music, divertimenti), he wrote the incredible Requiem.

This modern quintet arrangement is of his 4th Horn Concerto (K. 495). The concerto was written for Mozart’s friend Joseph Leutgeb in 1786 and is in four different coloured inks. This, it has been suggested, was there as a joke to unsettle Leutgeb. However, recent study suggests otherwise and it is now thought that this was some kind of code. All three movements are available either as separate pieces or as the whole concerto.

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