Wind Quintet in C Major, Op.79
For Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Horn & Bassoon
"Klughardt's Op.79 Wind Quintet should be of special interest to wind instrument societies. The individual instruments are handled with admirable skill, the possibilities of all, and in particular the clarinet and the horn, are especially well realized. The music is also to be admired and perfectly clear. In all four movements, the music is agreeable and entertaining. The composer's natural humor shows itself throughout." --Wilhelm Altmann writing in Cobbett's Cyclopedic Survey of Chamber Music.
August Klughardt (1847-1902) was born in the German town of Köthen in Saxon-Anhalt. After studying music locally, Klughardt began to earn his living by conducting. He served in several locales, including Weimar where he worked from 1869 to 1873. There, he met Franz Liszt, which was very important for his creative development. While influenced by Wagner and Liszt, Klughardt did not by any means entirely adopt the ideology of their New German School, refusing to write tone poems and instead concentrating on symphonies and chamber music. The influence of Robert Schumann, and to a lesser extent Brahms, certainly is equally important. It was his failure to whole-heartedly adopt Lisztian principals which led to his being labeled as a conservative composer.
In four movements, the Quintet dates from 1901. After a slow introduction, the opening Allegro non troppo starts off in a mysterious vein. But quickly changes mood into a playful series of interludes between the voices. The second movement, Allegro vivace, is a sprightly scherzo. The Andante grazioso, which serves as the slow movement, is in the form of a stately minuet. The finale begins with a lengthy Adagio introduction before the main sections, Allegro molto vivace, which is full of high spirits.
As Altmann says, this is a work wind players should not miss and will certainly enjoy.