Vivaldi - Concerto for Two Trumpets with Brass Ensemble & Timpani
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Antonio Vivaldi's Concerto for Two Trumpets in C major with Brass Ensemble and Timpani is a rarity for the Baroque era when solos for brass instruments were almost non-existent. The valveless nascent Trumpets were very difficult to play.
But as with Bach, there must have been a few brave souls who mastered the instrument and inspired the composer to write this masterpiece.
As with most of Vivaldi's concertos, this one begins with a quick and sparkling movement to catch the attention of the audience and to showcase the bright tones of the solo trumpets. This is followed by a contrasting brief and languid second movement. The final movement is back to brilliant mode with quick energy and intricate passages for the soloists. (Encylopedia Britannica).
Niels-Ole Bo Johansen has created a very unique arrangement for the two solo Trumpets with Brass Ensemble and Timpani...unique in that the accompaniment instruments are almost all conical (except for the trombones who can blend nicely into that pool of round sounds). This gives the listener a sharp contrast between the brilliance of the soloists and the plush sound of the accompaniment.
The 6 1/2 minute work is appropriate for advanced performers. The instrumentation is for: 2 solo Piccolo Trumpets in A, 2 Cornets in B-flat, Flugelhorn, 2 Horns in F, 3 Trombones, Euphonium, 2 Tubas, and Timpani.