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The Complete Symphonies Vol. 4 Symphony No. 5 D. 485 | Symphony No. 6 D. 589

Franz Schubert

Residentie Orkest The Hague
Jan Willem de Vriend

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Schubert’s musical ideas at this time sometimes bear a family resemblance to themes by Mozart, Haydn or Beethoven, but nevertheless his own style was already precociously developed. One would not mistake his Fifth Symphony of 1816 for the work of any other composer, though its difference in character from the Fourth Symphony is equally striking. Here, omitting clarinets, trumpets or timpani, Schubert uses a reduced orchestration in comparison with his previous symphonies.

Schubert began his Sixth Symphony in October 1817 and completed it in the following February. The Sixth Symphony represents a sideways step in Schubert’s symphonic development, a digression which may be explained by the phenomenal popularity of Rossini. At this time Rossini’s operas were being received with tremendous enthusiasm in Vienna. Keen to earn a living from his compositions, Schubert now emulated aspects of the style which was enjoying such vogue.

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