Franz Schubert

Rondo in A major


About this work

Austrian composer Franz Schubert wrote no concertos for solo instrument and orchestra. Aside from obbligato instruments in some of his songs, most notably the clarinet in Der Hirt auf dem Felsen (The Shepherd on the Rock) (D. 965), Schubert only wrote two concerted works: the Konzertstuck für Violine und Orchester (Concert Piece for Violin and Orchestra) (D. 345) and the extended Rondo für Violine und Streichorchester (Rondo for Violin and String Orchestra) (D. 438) from June, 1816. The latter is undoubtedly Schubert's concerted masterpiece. Prefaced by an extended Adagio opening, the Rondo is both a virtuoso display piece for the soloists and a wonderful piece of music in its own right. With three themes (a cheerfully dancing opening theme, a second theme in Schubert's best faux-volkstone style, and a dramatic closing theme that moves from minor to major) deployed as an extended rondo form moving through Schubert's favorite third-related keys and climaxing in F major, Schubert's Rondo is as delightful a work as any of the closing movements of Mozart's violin concertos.