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Mozart - Clarinet Concerto in A, K. 622 [complete]

Identifier

012065

Type of spiritual experience

Background

from the youtube video

"Mozart's Clarinet concerto in A major, K. 622 was written in 1791 for the clarinetist Anton Stadler. It consists of the usual three movements, in a fast-slow-fast form:
1. Allegro
2. Adagio
and 3. Rondo: Allegro.
It was also one of Mozart's final completed works, and his final purely instrumental work (he died in the December following its completion). The concerto is notable for its delicate interplay between soloist and orchestra, and for the lack of overly extroverted display on the part of the soloist (no cadenzas are written out in the solo part). Mozart originally wrote the work for basset clarinet, a special clarinet championed by Stadler that had a range down to low (written) C, instead of stopping at (written) E as standard clarinets do. As most clarinets could not play the low notes which Mozart wrote to highlight this instrument, Mozart's publisher arranged a version of the concerto with the low notes transposed to regular range, and did not publish the original version. This has proven a problematic decision, as the autograph no longer exists, having been pawned by Stadler, and until the mid 20th century musicologists did not know that the only version of the concerto written by Mozart's hand had not been heard since Stadler's lifetime. Once the problem was discovered, attempts were made to reconstruct the original version, and new basset clarinets have been built for the specific purpose of performing Mozart's concerto and clarinet quintet. There can no longer be any doubt that the concerto was composed for an extended-range clarinet. In this context it is worth noting two other works written for Stadler and his instrument by composers closely linked to the Mozart-Stadler circle that used the extended range of Stadler's instrument: the clarinet concerto by Franz Xaver Süssmayr (famous for having completed Mozart's Requiem) and that by Joseph Leopold Eybler. In recent years, the restored original version has been recorded by a number of different artists.
The concerto was given its premiere by Stadler in Prague on October 16, 1791. Reception of his performance was generally positive. The Berlin Musikalisches Wochenblatt noted in January of 1792, "Herr Stadeler, a clarinettist from Vienna. A man of great talent and recognised as such at court... His playing is brilliant and bears witness to his assurance." There was some disagreement on the value of Stadler's extension; some even faulted Mozart for writing for the extended instrument. "

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The source of the experience

Mozart

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