Review


Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Five Divertimenti: K. 439b (Anh.229)
Two tenors, or one alto and one tenor, and one bass trombone

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Publisher: Cherry Classics Music
Date of Publication: 2018
URL: http://www.cherryclassics.com

Score and parts

Genre: TROMBONE ENSEMBLES

Originally written for three basset horns, the Five Divertimenti K.439b by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart provide the arranger with twenty-five short pieces grouped into five movement Divertimenti, totaling about 45 minutes of music. Ralph Sauer has carefully transcribed the Five Divertimenti for trombone trio by making all the appropriate range and key adjustments. Otherwise this transcription remains faithful to the original version.

 

The range of the first trombone part never exceeds c2, putting it well within reach of most intermediate to advanced tenor trombonists. Although the third part does not specify whether it was intended to be performed on tenor or bass trombone and technically could be performed on a tenor with an F attachment, most tenor trombonists would probably find the part to be a bit clumsy due to the frequency with which it calls for pitches between BB-flat and E.

 

As is true of many brass trios, opportunities for any of the parts to rest are scarce and brief. This music also demands a certain degree of nimbleness and elegance that few trombonists will be able to sustain for 45 minutes without breaks. As a result, it seems difficult to imagine that there will be frequent performances of this work in its entirety. However, many of these individual movements or pieces might be perfect additions to any recital or chamber music program.

 

The Five Divertimenti are a welcome addition to the trombone trio repertory. As we have come to expect from Cherry Classics Music, the parts and score are well edited for clarity and concision and are available as either a mailed physical copy or digital download.

Reviewer: Greg Strohman
Review Published January 28, 2019