“Little G Minor” Symphony

Mozart's original manuscript of the Paris Symphony in the Berlin State Library

Source: Wikimedia

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart composed two symphonies in G minor. He created the “Little G minor” Mozart symphony (KV 183) in 1773, when he was a young concert master in the employ of the prince-archbishop. It contains musical patterns that had previously been unusual for Mozart: less accommodating, less entertaining, but with interesting syncopations, dissonances and tremolo and unisono passages – typical for Mozart’s “sturm und drang” period – full of expression. Some critics consider this Mozart symphony the “little” predecessor of his second symphony in G minor (KV 550), composed in 1788. Others argue that Mozart deliberately chose this key for this Mozart symphony because he was suffering from depression, but it is certainly also the expression of a 17-year-old experimenting with his art.