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Serenade for flute, violin and viola in D major Op.25

Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)

Chloë Hanslip

Chloë Hanslip

Composer
Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)
Composition Year
1801
Work Movements
1. Entrata: Allegro
2. Tempo ordinario d’un Menuetto – Tri - 1 – Trio II
3. Allegro molto
4. Andante con variazioni
5. Allegro scherzando e vivace
6. Adagio - Allegro vivace
Artists
Phillipe Bernold [flute], Chloë Hanslip [violin], Lilli Maijala [viola]

Programme Note Writer:
© Ian Fox

This delightful work was published in 1802 by Cappi in Vienna. There are sketches for it as far back as 1796 but experts suggest the finished work as being from 1801. This would place it after such masterpieces as the First Symphony, the first two Piano Concertos and the first set of String Quartets, and the sophisticated style and wit is clearly that of the rapidly maturing composer. A Serenade at that time would have suggested a musical work for the evening, perhaps to be played in the background at a party or aristocratic social gathering.  It begins with an Entrata, an initial piece meant to accompany the arrival perhaps of the host or some important guest. There is a bird-song quality to this movement, followed by a graceful Minuet with two contrasting Trio sections, interposed to add extra colour.  Beethoven follows the Minuet with the first of two lively Scherzos, which changes mood for its hard driven Trio.

The Variations movement provides some respite, with a serene theme such as one might find in the later Quartets and initially given to just the strings before the flute picks up the melody.  Each instrument has its own variation beginning in a lively mood with the flute whose witty staccato comments alternate with virtuoso flourishes. The violin picks up the tempo for its contribution before the viola broadens out the melody before decorating it even further. The coda brings us back to the theme and there’s a witty postscript to round off the movement.

 The tempo quickens up again for the chirpy little scherzo,  another whirlwind affair, with  a short Trio  to cool the pace. The fun quickly returns as the Finale starts with a graceful slow dance which suddenly bursts into a high-speed theme allegro vivace e disinvolto  (very fast and carefree). This is in fact a rondo movement, with the first theme reappearing between a series of three contrasting episodes.  Then to ensure the festivities are fully enjoyed the Serenade suddenly slows down before accelerating into a Presto conclusion.

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Serenade for flute, violin and viola in D major Op.25

Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)
Performance date: Saturday 4th July 2015
Venue: St. Brendan's Church, Bantry, Co Cork, Ireland

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Composer Ludwig van Beethoven (b. 1770 - d. 1827)
Work Title Serenade for flute, violin and viola in D major Op.25
Composition Year 1801
Work Movements 1. Entrata: Allegro
2. Tempo ordinario d’un Menuetto – Tri - 1 – Trio II
3. Allegro molto
4. Andante con variazioni
5. Allegro scherzando e vivace
6. Adagio - Allegro vivace
Artist(s) Phillipe Bernold [flute], Chloë Hanslip [violin], Lilli Maijala [viola]
Performance Date Saturday 4th July 2015
Performance Venue St. Brendan's Church, Bantry, Co Cork, Ireland
Event Coffee Concert
Duration 00:16:27
Recording Engineer Richard McCullough, RTÉ lyric fm
Instrumentation Category Trio
Instrumentation fl, vn, va
Programme Note Writer © Ian Fox

This delightful work was published in 1802 by Cappi in Vienna. There are sketches for it as far back as 1796 but experts suggest the finished work as being from 1801. This would place it after such masterpieces as the First Symphony, the first two Piano Concertos and the first set of String Quartets, and the sophisticated style and wit is clearly that of the rapidly maturing composer. A Serenade at that time would have suggested a musical work for the evening, perhaps to be played in the background at a party or aristocratic social gathering.  It begins with an Entrata, an initial piece meant to accompany the arrival perhaps of the host or some important guest. There is a bird-song quality to this movement, followed by a graceful Minuet with two contrasting Trio sections, interposed to add extra colour.  Beethoven follows the Minuet with the first of two lively Scherzos, which changes mood for its hard driven Trio.

The Variations movement provides some respite, with a serene theme such as one might find in the later Quartets and initially given to just the strings before the flute picks up the melody.  Each instrument has its own variation beginning in a lively mood with the flute whose witty staccato comments alternate with virtuoso flourishes. The violin picks up the tempo for its contribution before the viola broadens out the melody before decorating it even further. The coda brings us back to the theme and there’s a witty postscript to round off the movement.

 The tempo quickens up again for the chirpy little scherzo,  another whirlwind affair, with  a short Trio  to cool the pace. The fun quickly returns as the Finale starts with a graceful slow dance which suddenly bursts into a high-speed theme allegro vivace e disinvolto  (very fast and carefree). This is in fact a rondo movement, with the first theme reappearing between a series of three contrasting episodes.  Then to ensure the festivities are fully enjoyed the Serenade suddenly slows down before accelerating into a Presto conclusion.