II. VIVACE NON TROPPO
from Symphony No. 3 in A minor, Op. 56 'Scottish'
by Felix Mendelssohn
Felix Mendelssohn was born in 1809 in Hamburg, Germany and died in 1847 in Leipzig, Germany.
Mendelssohn’s family moved to Berlin when he was a toddler and he began composing at an early age. By the time Mendelssohn was ten, he regularly attended the Berliner Singakademie, a type of musical society, with his family. It was through Singakademie that Mendelssohn gained experience in conducting. After he conducted a performance of Bach’s St Matthew Passion in 1829, Mendelssohn was invited to conduct the London Philharmonic Society in the same year.
Mendelssohn spent four months in London before embarking on a tour of Scotland, the journey that provided the inspiration for Symphony No. 3, later nicknamed the ‘Scottish’. Mendelssohn would not complete the work for many years and a premiere at the Leipzig Gewandhaus in 1842 was followed soon after by a performance in London. Queen Victoria, to whom the work is dedicated, was in the audience. She greatly admired Mendelssohn’s talent and described him as ‘the greatest musical genius since Mozart’. The symphony is the fifth and final symphony that Mendelssohn wrote, but was titled Symphony No. 3 when it was published before two symphonies he had written earlier.
Vivace non troppo is the second of four movements that are played continuously in performance without a break.
Step 1. Watch the video to learn about the E Flat Clarinet
Step 2. Listen to the TSO recording of Vivace non troppo
Step 3. Answer 10 questions
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