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All Listed Works Edition Silvertrust
Franz Krommer

Franz Krommer (1759-1831)

Nationality: Czech | Moravian
Born: November 27, 1759, Kamenice u Třebíče Died: January 8, 1831, Vienna (age 71)

String Quintet in E-flat major, Op. 106, No. 2

(for 2 violins, 2 violas and cello)
I. Allegro moderato
II. Andante moderato
III. Menuetto. Allegretto - Trio
IV. Allegretto
Published: c. 1825 (age 65-66)
From Edition Silvertrust

Franz Krommer String Quintet No.25 in E flat Major is the second of a set of three quintets, one of many sets which were extraordinarily popular. Completed in 1824, they were played throughout Europe and even as far away as America.The work opens with a playful Allegro moderato, which begins with a responsion duet between the cello and first violin. Soon all join in this rousing, upbeat piece which boasts many original touches. The second movement, Andante moderato, though not so marked is a theme, first heard in the lower voices, and a set of interesting variations. The theme is from the popular French melody Vivre Henri Quatre, which celebrated the crowning of Henri of Navarre, who ended the wars of religion, as King of France. The third movement is a Haydnesque Menuetto, allegretto in which finds some rather amusing, quixotic, offbeat rhythmic effects along with a lyrical trio. The finale is an appealing Allegretto.

By 1806, Franz Krommer was widely regarded as the leading Classical Era composer, not only in Vienna and Germany, but throughout Europe as evidenced by what an influential contemporary musical reference source wrote:

“Franz Krommer of Vienna is not only an outstandingly good violinist but also one of the best loved composers as witnessed by the number of copies of his works which have been printed and gone through several editions. Mr Krommer boasts such a wealth of original ideas, wit, fire, novel harmonic turns that he will easily attract and capture the attention of quartet lovers now that Haydn’s name is no longer to be found in the list of new published works.”

Franz Krommer (1759-1831) was born in town of Kamnitz then part of the Habsburg Austrian Empire (today Kamenice in the Czech Republic) It had a mixed population of Germans and Czechs and though baptized František Vincenc Kramář by the time he was 15, Krommer began using the Germanized version of his name for the rest of his life, the name by which he beame known to the world. Krommer was one of the most successful composers in Vienna at the turn of the 18th Century. His reputation was attested to by the fact that his works were frequently republished throughout Germany, England, France, Italy, Scandinavia and even the United States. According to several contemporary sources he was regarded with Haydn as the leading composer of string quartets and as a serious rival of Beethoven. Krommer was a violinist of considerable ability who came to Vienna around 1785. For the following 10 years he held appointments at various aristocratic courts in Hungary. He returned to Vienna in 1795 where he remained until his death, holding various positions including that of Court Composer (Hofmusiker) to the Emperor, Franz I, an enthusiastic quartet player. He was the last composer to hold this august title and one of his duties was accompanying the Emperor on his various campaigns so that he could relax in the evenings playing quartets. There are more than 300 compositions which were at one time or another published, much of which is chamber music. He wrote more than 70 string quartets, 35 quintets, perhaps as many as 15 string trios, but also several works for winds and strings.

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1800 František Xaver Dušek (1731-1799) Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) Leopold Kozeluch (1747-1818) Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) Paul Wranitzky (1756-1808) Franz Krommer (1759-1831) Jan Dussek (1760-1812) Anton Wranitzky (1761-1820) Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)