Mozart – Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550

by Max Derrickson

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart     (b. January 27, 1756 in Salzburg; d. December 5, 1791 in Vienna)

Symphony No. 40 in G minor, K. 550
1. Molto allegro
2. Andante
3. Menuetto – Allegretto – Trio
4. Allegro assai

In the same year, 1788, that he wrote his Contradance, Mozart composed what would be his last three symphonies, No.’s 39, 40 and 41, within about ten weeks during that summer.
[. . .]
The 40th in G-Minor, with its strength, its energy and darkness, is perhaps Mozart’s most beloved symphony.  As the agitated chords introduce the first movement, Mozart gives us one of his most unforgettable melodies.  Through the sublimely moving Andante, the aggravated and angular Menuetto, to the bracingly spirited finale, the 40th moves us through both anguish and splendor with potency and subtlety.
[. . .]