Mozart’s 40th and 25th

    Mozart, detail from a contemporaneous portrait by Johann Nepomuk della Croce, 1781. (

    Mozart published his 40th symphony on this day in 1788, the ‘great’ in G minor, one of two symphonies he wrote in the minor key – the other also in G minor, number 25, called the ‘little’ (I suppose calling it the ‘minor’ would be a tad confusing). The original music is scored for flute, two oboes, two clarinets, two bassoons, two horns and strings. The result is, well, Mozart at his finest:

    We will add the 25th for comparison, published in 1773, when the composer was a mere seventeen years of age: What were we doing the year before we were able to vote?