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Clarinet Quintet in A major
Clarinet Quintet in B minor
John Luther Adams
The Wind in High Places [movement 2]
Unleashing the power of chamber music through the quintets of Mozart and Brahms
Mozart and Brahms wrote just one clarinet quintet each, both in the final years of their lives. But it’s their inherent quality and charm, not only their solitary status, which has always made these quintets stand out amongst each composer’s repertoire.
Mozart’s is now not only one of his best-known pieces, but one of the most cherished in the clarinet repertoire, and it’s easy to see why: moments of understated virtuosity bloom from a soft, calm, mellow beauty. Brahms’ quintet – modelled on Mozart’s, as so many of his works are – is similarly autumnal in mood, with waves of contemplative major and melancholic minor moods shifting like sunlight.