Programmes 2018–2020

The Harmonien or wind ensembles of the late-18th century are best known for playing serenades and transcriptions of large-scale operatic works. But as Harmoniemusik grew ever more popular in the early-19th century it became common to create inventive and virtuosic arrangements of chamber music. Our programmes for 2018–19 and 2019–20 are designed to showcase different facets of Harmoniemusik, including many works unique to our repertoire... for enquiries and prices, please email us.

Programmes for 9 players

Our large programmes for the next two sesaons are designed to reflect the buildup to Beethoven 2020, the 250th anniversary of the composer's birth. We are offering two options, which we think of as 'Beethoven Heavy' and 'Beethoven Light'. The Compleat Beethoven brings together the major original and arranged works by Beethoven for Harmonie, showing the way that the composer's works found their way into the public consciousness. For those of you who are already Beethoven-saturated, or who perhaps think that other composers should get a look-in: we agree! So our other programme is a Beethoven-free zone, bringing attention instead to the figures who worked alongside him in Vienna in the 1800s, including Imperial Kapellmeister Franz Krommer, leading oboist and opera composer Joseph Triebensee, and of course the collosal figure of Josef Haydn.

Boxwood & Brass play Beethoven 7 and 'Pathetique' Sonata in original arrangements for Harmonie. Rehearsal footage from our tour 'The Harmonie in Beethoven's Vienna', February 2017.

The Compleat Beethoven
Beethoven Egmont Overture and Incidental Music     15’
Beethoven Symphony Pathetique or Octet Op. 103     25’
Beethoven Symphony No. 7     40’

Harmoniemusik from Beethoven’s Vienna
Haydn arr. Druschetzky: ‘Chaos’ from The Creation     5’
Hummel Octet in Eb     14’
Krommer Partita Op. 57 or 69     20'
Triebensee Partita     20’
Haydn arr. Triebensee: ‘Oxford’ Symphony     21’

Programmes for 6 players

The 6–player ensemble of clarinets, horns and bassoons was the most common form of Harmonie in the late 18th century. Employed by the aristocratic courts of central Europe, Harmonien would provide different sorts of music throughout the highly-ritualised timetable of the court day – including Tafelmusik (table music, for dining), and Nachtmusik (serenades for the evening). Our programme Nachtmusik puts our own twist on the tradition of night-time serenades. Arrangement was an integral part of the Harmoniemusik tradition in the 18th century, with symphonic and instrumental works and even existing Harmoniemusik frequently re-worked for different sized ensembles. Here we present classics of the Harmoniemusik genre alongside our own arrangements - and challenge you to tell which is which!

Beethoven’s Septet Op. 20 was arguably the most popular piece of music of its day - so much so that Beethoven became quite angry at how it overshadowed his later works. Carl Czerny’s fascinating and virtuosic arrangement was completed at the end of Czerny’s studies with Beethoven, as is a unique Boxwood & Brass offering – we are the only group who perform it!

Watch a preview video featuring selections from the Beethoven/Czerny Septet.

Mozart arr. Percival Serenade in C minor K. 388, 'Nachtmusik'     20'
Beethoven Sextet in Eb Op. 71     20’
Mozart arr. Percival Symphony No. 40 in G minor     40’

Krommer Partita in F Op. 57     20’
Weber Concertino for Horn or Andante and Rondo for Bassoon     12’
Beethoven arr. Czerny Septet Op. 20     40’

CD Programme: Music for a Prussian Salon (5 players)

Though we now associate musical Romanticism with the 19th century, its roots lie in the 18th, as Enlightenment values and revolutionary sentiments stirred in the salons of Europe.

Clarinetist Emily Worthington talks about the music featured in Music for a Prussian Salon.

Roots of Romanticism tells the story of the forgotten clarinettist and composer Franz Tausch (1762–1816), whose extraordinary life was intertwined with origins of the German Romantic movement. Boxwood & Brass re-create a Prussian salon, where the flowering of Romantic musical language is revealed by the music of Tausch and his circle. We also offer a version including literary readings by Dr Katy Hamilton exploring the emergence of Romantic thought.
This programme is based on our debut CD Music for a Prussian Salon. For more information about the CD, see here.

Programme includes a selection of music by Franz Tausch, Heinrich Baermann, Bernhard Henrik Crusell, and Johann Stamitz

photo by Tom Bowles

photo by Tom Bowles