Mozart – Symphony No. 28 (Koopman)

Conducted by the Dutch conductor, organist, and harpsichordist Ton Koopman, the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra performs Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Symphony No. 28 in C major, K. 200/189k. Recorded in 1991. The exact composition date of the symphony is unknown, but it is one of Mozart’s Salzburg-era symphonies (1771-1777). It was probably composed in 1773 or 1774.

Mozart: Symphony No.28 / Ton Koopman, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra (1991)

If the piece was composed in 1774, the Symphony No. 28 followed rather than preceded 29th and 30th symphonies. This symphony is scored for 2 oboes, 2 horns, 2 trumpets, and strings and there are four movements:

  1. Allegro spiritoso, 3/4. The movement begins with a four-chord downward arpeggio before the fun begins in the violins. There’s a key change for the longer second subject, plus a brief closing theme in C major. After an exposition repeat, the principal theme not only dominates a short, spicy development but leads off the reprise and coda, too.
  2. Andante in F major, 2/4. The 2nd movement opens with an aria-like, legato main theme for muted violins, but it is the third, closing subject (in sixteenth notes) that occupies a brief development section.
  3. Menuet – Trio, 3/4. This is a danceable minuet with oboes doubling both song-section themes for violins.
  4. Presto, 2/2. The last movement, even in Mozart’s standards, “insouciant”, according to music writer Roger Dettmer. “Craftsmanship is masterly, the more astonishing when it’s remembered that this isn’t the usual rondo-finale, but sonata form. The violins’ trilled main-theme, like the whir of hummingbird wings, is the principal subject of both the development and a brief coda, wherein oboes double the trills – thrills in fact, given the challenge of Mozart’s vivacious tempo.”

Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir

Ton Koopman founded Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra (ABO) in 1979. The group consists of internationally renowned baroque specialists who meet up several times a year and work together to prepare and perform new exciting programs. For the musicians, each concert is a new experience and Koopman’s boundless energy and enthusiasm are a sure guarantee for the highest quality.

Amsterdam Baroque Choir (ABO&C) was founded in 1992 and it made its debut during the Holland Festival of Early Music in Utrecht performing the world première of the Requiem (for 15 voices) and Vespers (for 32 voices) by H.I.F. Biber. The recording of both of these works won the Cannes Classical Award for the best performance of 17th/18th-century choral music. For its rare combination of textural clarity and interpretative flexibility, ABO&C is considered among today’s most outstanding choirs.
In 1994 Ton Koopman and ABO&C embarked upon the most ambitious recording project of the last decades: the integral recording of Bach’s secular and sacred cantatas. For this extraordinary project, Koopman and his ensemble received the Deutsche Schallplatten-Preis Echo Klassik. In 2014 ABO&C finished another grand project: performing and recording all the works by Dieterich Buxtehude, a great source of inspiration for the young Johann Sebastian Bach. The final volume of this series was released in 2014.

That year also marked the 35th anniversary of ABO and featured an extensive tour in the Netherlands and in Europe. The children’s theatrical music production ‘Oorwurm’, a project that Ton Koopman undertook together with his daughter Marieke Koopman, made baroque music of the highest quality accessible for young people throughout the Netherlands, thus fulfilling a life-long dream of Ton Koopman.
ABO&C have recorded all major baroque and classical works. Major recognitions include the Gramophone Award, Diapason d’Or, 10-Repertoire, Stern des Monats-Fono Forum, the Prix Hector Berlioz and two Edison Awards. In 2008 the ensemble and Ton Koopman have been honored with the prestigious BBC Award, and in 2009, for the second time with an Echo Klassik Award for Vol. VII of Buxtehude Opera- Omnia. Ton Koopman and the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir are regular guests at the major concert halls and festivals of Europe, the USA, and Asia.

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