Exclusive leaf from Mozarts masterpiece may fetch PS100,000 at auction

November 30th, 2007 - 2:30 pm ICT by admin  

London, Nov 30 (ANI): One of the two most important single sheets from one of Mozarts greatest compositions has been discovered in a private collection in England, and will soon be up for grabs.

It is the passage for the first movement of the Sinfonia Concertante in E flat for Violin, Viola and Orchestra, K364, the 1779 magnum opus that shot him into the ranks of the worlds greatest musicians.

Despite being a single sheet, it comes from Mozarts best work for the violin and possibly the greatest work by anyone for the viola.

It is scheduled to be auctioned at Sothebys in London on Dec 4, and is likely to surpass the auctioneers 100,000 pounds estimate.

Of particular interest to the scholars is the reverse of the sheet, which bears the playing parts for two horns, again in Mozarts hand, for two unidentified pieces.

The Sinfonia Concertante is not only one of Mozarts greatest works, it is also the key work that saw the young composer attain the level of musical accomplishment that has defined his reputation ever since, Times Online quoted Simon Maguire, senior specialist in Sothebys music department, as saying.

In spite of its importance, however, our familiarity with the piece today derives solely from published versions of the work, the entire original composing manuscript having been lost, he added.

Mozart composed The Sinfonia Concertante when he was 23. The two leaves, containing the two cadenzas, are the only pieces surviving of the
original score and it is one of these that has now emerged.

What makes the survival of this sheet particularly noteworthy is the fact that cadenzas are perhaps the least likely part of any musical piece ever to be written down. Cadenzas were usually improvised, so there was no need for written guidance from composers, Maguire said.

In this instance, because the concerto is a work for two instruments, Mozart worked it out in advance and wrote it out separately to avoid the two instruments improvising independently and clashing. Were it not for this, there would be no surviving manuscript for this work, he added.

The handwriting, which is swift and sketchy, reflects that it was a first draft anxiously composed as Mozart went along.

Hed not even time to fill in the note heads in many places, Maguire said.

He also added that Mozart almost undoubtedly wrote it for himself on the viola and his father, Leopold, on the violin. (ANI)

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