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About the program

Sturm und Drang was a German “outgrowth” of Sentimentalism, advocating in passion, talent, artlessness and national values in literature. It was an emotional revolt against feudalism and absolutism. The movement gained its name from the apt title of a contemporary German drama, written by Friedrich Maximilian Klinger in 1776. The spirit of Sturm und Drang captivated not only men of letters. The young Haydn also composed a series of passionate symphonies of high pathos between 1768 and 1772. The opening piece of our concert belongs to this group.

Those familiar with Mozart’s life know that the composer was obsessed with dance and was himself an excellent dancer. This was probably partly responsible for his lasting contribution to dance music. He wrote his first dance at the age of five, and as a young man in Salzburg, he would compose dance music for every occasion imaginable. The K. 571 series was written for the 1789 carnival season.

Mozart’s Czech contemporary, Johann Baptist Vanhal (or Jan Křtitel Vaňhal) lived and worked in Vienna from 1780 until his death. He was an acknowledged participant in the musical life of the imperial capital, leaving behind a vast oeuvre of some 1300 compositions. His concerto for double bass stands out among the few concertos written for the instrument.

Writing mostly for the opera, Rossini composed relatively few concertos. Nothing is known about the birth of his concerto for the bassoon, which he probably wrote between 1842 and 1845. The last composition on our programme is one of Mozart’s last symphonies, the K. 543 piece in E flat major. It was completed in June 1788, a time of considerable trouble and hardship in the life of the composer—nothing of which can be heard in the work, which is infused with serenity and joie de vivre.


Program

Joseph Haydn: Symphony No. 39 in G minor, Hob. I:39
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: German Dances, K. 571
Johann Baptist Vanhal: Concerto for Double Bass in D major
Gioacchino Rossini: Bassoon Concerto
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart: Symphony No. 39 in E flat major, K. 543

conductor

Gábor Takács-Nagy

Soloists

Zsolt Fejérvári, double bass
Andrea Bressan, bassoon