Historical Development of Violin Concertos (II) – Mozart’s Violin Concerto No:5 in A Major, Turkish (1)

Source: ‘’Mozart ’’ in: http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/395455/Wolfgang-Amadeus-Mozart/15614/Salzburg-and-Munich

Review: Author introduces to Mozart’s music carrier and his periods. Author, analyses Mozart’s musical innovations and compositions according to city and date. The part that we should read is Salzburg years due to the fact that Mozart composed his violin concertos in Salzburg.

Information and Comments about Period: In classical era, instruments were developed, orchestras were extended according to baroque period. There was a Manheim school. Manheim School was improvement for orchestral techniques and musical innovations . In addition, instrumentation techniques were enhanced. The bow of violin were longer than baroque bow. In order to increase volume of violin and use that as a virtuoso instrument, luthiers enhanced height of bridge and made the neck that not parallel to body. Thus, it increases pressure and volume.

Form: We can conclude that form has improvements in classical period. However, it has ritornello principle as Baroque period, the original concerto form and sonata form were occurred in Classical Era. For instance, ‘’double exposition’’ which is a formal term means that The main theme is doubled by orchestra and soloist. Firstly, Orchestra introduces main theme, then soloist part.

Mozart’s Salzburg Years: In 1773, Mozart started to work in Salzburg court as a court musician in Colleredo court. Before he began to work there, he made journeys in order to show his child prodigy.  There was a public concert idea in Enlightment era; public concerts were increased in that period. He also played his music in courts. Displaying the virtuosity was not gaining as significant as Romantic Era such as Paganini but it was more popular than baroque. Thus, the virtuosity idea also influences Mozart’s work. Mozart composed generally instrumental compositions in that period such as; symphonies, string quartets, serenades, sonatas, concertos. Occasion of violin concertos is unknown certainly. It probably composed for him or his violinist friends. Later these concertos played by Antonia Brunetti who is Salzburger konzertmeister in 1776.

Question: Why concerto No 5 was named as a ‘’Turkish’’ ?

Answer: Mozart was also interested in eastern culture. There are eastern and authentic effect on Mozart music in this years. He used chromatics and mehteran rhythms in this allegro. Also it is loudly and complex than  other sections. Because of this features it is named as Turkish concerto. It is definite that he uses these mehteran rhythmic pattern not for his special interest . He uses it as a contrast theme which describes barbarism or rudeness of Turkey.


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