Sextet for Clarinet, Horn, Violin, Viola, Cello & Bass
Joachim Eggert's Sextet in f minor dates from 1807. It is quite an interesting work, especially because of the prominence given to the horn which is allotted several solos. The work opens with a mysterious somewhat lugubrious Adagio introduction in which the lower registers of the bass and cello figure prominently. The main section Allegro begins with the horn introducing the fist theme in its entirety. Later the clarinet has the same opportunity taking over the melodic line and its development. The two wind instruments are given the lead for much of the sextet as the strings serve, to some extent in accompanying role. The second movement, an Adagio, begins rather like the introduction to the previous movement, with a low groan in the bass and cello before the clarinet enters and states the lovely vocal subject. The violin then takes over, for what is the first time before the the voices regroup into a blended ensemble. A bumptious Haydnesque Menuetto comes next. Here, all of the instruments are given equal roles to play. The trio section is much quicker with the violin and clarinet chasing after one another in a lively exchange. The finale, Allegro, begins with an exciting drum-like rhythm. Once again, the horn and clarinet are given a chance to shine are given the bulk of the melodic material as the strings provide an exciting, whirling backdrop.
Joachim Eggert (1779-1813) was born in in the town of Gingst then part of Swedish Pomerania, but now in Germany. At a very young age he started studying the violin and subsequently took lessons in composition. He held various posts eventually joining the Royal Court Orchestra of Sweden. He wrote in most genres and his work clearly shows the influence of Haydn, Mozart and other elements of Vienna Classicism. None of his works, including this sextet were published during his lifetime. It is thought to date from around 1807 at which time Eggert started to receive commission from the Swedish nobility and the Court in Stockholm. A few years after Eggert’s death, his brother paid the German publisher Breitkopf and Härtel to have some of Joachim’s works published. The Sextet was among these.
This is a lovely work which can be warmly recommended to professionals and amateurs alike. It certainly deserves to be heard in concert.
Parts & Score: $49.95