A musical piece designated for
a soloist or soloists and an orchestra. The
concerto consists of three movements.
The first is fast, and usually in the sonata
The second movement is slow and poetic, singing-like, and the third one
is fast, again, often in the rondo-sonata
or sonata-variations. At the end of the first movement there is a cadenza,
where the soloist displays his virtuoso abilities and sometimes even improvises
(without any pre-written notes).
In the past, that is in the Baroque,
the more common form of concerto was the concerto
in which a small group of instrumentalists played versus the entire orchestra
("Soli" versus "Ripieno"). Bach
wrote many Concerti Grossi,
among which is the Brandenburg Concerti.
also composed 12
serious, profound Concerti Grossi.
In the classical period the concerto
becomes personal - The concerto
solo. Composers place the single soloist to play against
the orchestra. Haydn
wrote many concerti,
among which is the excellent Trumpet Concerto,
was the one who shaped the classic concerto.
He wrote about 50 concerti for different solo instruments, and the last
ten Piano Concerti are particularly good.
Piano Concerto no. 21
is mostly known for the slow movement used in the motion picture "Elvira
Madigan". His Clarinet
Concerto and Violin
Concerto no. 3 are also considered among the
best of his work.
The concerto suited well the Romantic
period, an era that favored the individual
and his personal expression. As a person who
represented the Romantic period in both art and life, Beethoven
composed special, profound concerti. His Piano
Concerto no. 5 "The Emperor"
and Piano Concerto no. 3
are some of the best in the history of music. They include a first movement
that is "heavier" than what was customary before. Beethoven's
is also one of the summits of this genre, although it geniusly integrates
the solo violinist in the orchestra, rather than demonstrates his capability.
wrote the E minor
of the favourites in orchestral repertory, and Liszt
wrote the spectacular Piano
Concerto no. 1. In his Violin
Concerto and diametrically opposed characterized
also represents the Romantic concerto
at its finest.
Examples of concerto parts
Concerto for Piccolo in C
Allegro aperto from Flute Concerto in D (K.314)
Piano Concerto No.2 in Cm, Op.18 (movement 2)