The diverse audience seemed satisfied. Only Armando, a man with white hair, made grimaces when people applauded between an allegro and an andante in the second symphony. “You’re not supposed to applaud yet,” he grumbled while covering his head in his hands.

And this, friends, was in Havana!

Here’s the thing: I understand both sides. The old school folks are cringing because of the applause. They really do things like grumble stare harshly at offenders. The newbies put their noses in the air and cry “snobbism” regarding the applause issue. The newbies (not all, mind you, but some) want to text and clap and do what they want when they want. I find them equally disturbing. Or even more so since many tend toward ageism as well. I’m not sure exactly WHAT I really want. I’m not sure what the answer is. But I get annoyed with both groups.

I read the above quote here. In the same article I read this:

Prior to that, the orchestra had played Symphony No. 34 in D minor K. 338 and the Concert for English Horn and Orchestra K. 417, interpreted by soloist Debbie Velez (English horn), both by Mozart.

I’m guessing this is a French horn work. Mozart mentions English horn in his letters, but as far as writing for it, well … there’s the Adagio, K Anh. 94 (580a), but I have never heard if that was truly for English horn.


  1. That’s the strangest sounding saxophone I’ve ever heard!

  2. … and it’s black, too. Who knew saxophones came in black?! 😉

  3. patti with an i

    I sometimes wonder what the unfamiliar ones, crying snobbery, would do if I showed up at a rock concert they were attending, and tried to make people sit down in their seats and just listen to the music. There are unwritten codes of conduct in effect everywhere. Some of these folks just object to our having one that they don’t like.

    That said, I have re-trained myself to appreciate an audience’s genuine response to any performance I’m involved in, whatever form it takes. Just for heaven’s sake DON’T be the one who just has to leap in with the applause after an emotionally draining slow movement that really just needs to have that endless silence at the end. That will always be a hanging offense.

  4. I’m with you, patti with an i. Entirely. I really dislike the leapers. But I also dislike the crowd that loves to give disapproving stares to those that might applaud at what could be considered the wrong time. It’s a touchy issue, to be sure.

    Mostly I just want to lighten up. And embrace applause. 🙂

    Did you read the other blog entry I put up, where someone cried snobbery because an audience member shouted “bravi” instead of the more common “bravo”? (Sadly the offender also applauded too soon after a quiet movement, so there’s that … sigh.)

  5. This is actually scored as a Quintet for English Horn and strings. I believe the 580a marking is because there’s another version with a 580b which is scored for basset horn or something like that. It was found as a fragment, and so the orchestratino wasn’t exactly clear.