Joachim Nicolas Eggert (1779−1813)

Sestetto pour Clarinette, Cor, Violon, Viola, Violoncelle et Basse
[Sextet for clarinet, horn (alternatively basset horn), violin, viola, cello and double bass Op. 6.]


1. Adagio — Allegro
2. Adagio
3. Menuetto: Presto
4. Finale: Allegro

  • Year of composition: probably in 1807
  • Work category: 6 Instruments
  • Dedication: composé et dédié à Moniseur Nauckhoff
  • First performed: 14 May 1807, Stockholm (Riddarhuset?), Crusell, Preumayr, Askergren, Salge, Wirthe, Mueller
  • Duration: Approx. 25-30 min


clar, hn (alt. basset horn), , vn, vla, vc, db

Examples of printed editions

Levande musikarv, Stockholm 2020. Critical edition by Andreas Edlund.
Breitkopf & Härtel, 2866, Leipzig (first edition)
Amadeus Verlag, BP1215, Wintherthur/Schweiz 2006 (ed. Bernhard Päuler): Sextett in f-moll für Klarinette, Horn oder Bassetthorn, Violine, Viola, Violoncello und Kontrabass

Location for score and part material

Handwritten score and handwritten parts in the Swedish Music and Theatre Library.


• Musiken i Sverige, band II (Ficher & Co, Stockholm 1995)
• Preface to Amadeus Verlag's edition

Description of work

1. Adagio F minor 4/4 (C)
2. Adagio B major 3/4
3. Menuetto: Presto F minor 3/4
4. Finale: Allegro F major 4/4 (C)

Work comment

The sextet for clarinet, horn (alternatively basset horn), violin, viola, cello and double bass was intended to be performed at the concert Eggert arranged at Riddarhuset (The House of Nobility) on May 14, 1807. Due to illness this did not happen, but thanks to the fact that the sextet was printed in the program, we know that it must have been composed before May 1807. One source of inspiration may have been Beethoven's Septet Op. 20, which at this time was Beethoven's most performed work in Stockholm. Another may have been the fact that Hovkapellet (the Royal Court Orchestra) at that time could boast a number of particularly prominent woodwind players; clarinetist Bernhard Henrik Crusell, hornist Johann Michael Friedrich Hirschfeld, oboist Carl Anton Braun and the three Preumayr brothers, all bassoonists. If they had not become ill, Crusell and the eldest brother Preumayr would have played the sextet at the May 14 concert.

As in much of Eggert's music, Haydn is a clear model, alongside Beethoven. The first movement begins with a slow, melancholic introduction, where, after a while, the cello and bass are joined by the viola. The dark character continues through the first theme where the horn has the principle role. Only when the clarinet and violin take over with the second theme does the mood become lighter. This duo then continues to drive the music in both development and recapitulation, although the horn also reappears when the first theme returns.

The second movement, too, begins with a similar introduction by the lower strings, but here it is the clarinet that then presents the movement's pleasing lyrical melody. For a while, the violin takes over the lead role, later returning the baton to the clarinet. The whole movement is characterised by a more developed ensemble playing than in the first movement.

In the minuet, the strings and the wind instruments are more clearly contrasted, and in the trio they directly chase one another. Here, Eggert has also inserted some Haydnesque rhythmic effects.

The last movement opens with a short galloping introduction, after which the clarinet presents a lyrical melody which, after a while, changes into a more swirling character when the violin joins the clarinet. Even the horn is sometimes allowed to shine as a soloist in this fast-paced and attractive allegro. © Mårten Nehrfors Hultén, Levande musikarv Transl. Jill Johnson

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