BHB Harmoniemusik Editions
available for purchase directly from Sarastro Press
Fifteen Dances by Carl Andreas Goepfert (1768-1818) edited by Nessa Glen for 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 horns, trumpet, serpent (SAR 0118)
Excerpts from accompanying notes and commentary
by Nessa Glenn:
The dedication to the Guard of First Consul Napoleon Bonaparte dates the manuscript between 1800 and 1804. This was probably Goepfert's first major attempt to secure a position away from Saxe Meininger. The selection of pieces (marches, dances and parthias ) of the entire set was almost certainly a miscalculation since virtually all of French Harmoniemusik works at this time were arrangements of operas. (The few exceptions appear to be either pieces based on Napoleon's victories or sets of marches) . . . .
Goepfert studied clarinet with Meissner in Wurzburg before moving to Vienna about 1788. He studied music theory and composition with Mozart for about a year and a half and, he claimed in 1817, Mozart gave him scores of his operas to arrange for Harmoniemusik. About 10 years later he certainly arranged a number of Mozart's work for winds.
In 1793 he became first clarinet with the orchestra in the Meininger Court Orchestra and later took charge of court military music as well. He obtained a leave of absence in 1798 to establish himself as a soloist in Vienna; however this was cancelled and he was forced to return to Meiningen where the post of Kapellmeister failed to materialize. Goepfert tried at least twice to acquire a better post. The first involved his sending a large number of works to France; these were dedicated to the French army and Napoleon as First Consul (post mid-1800-1804). This set of pieces describes him as first clarinet in the Kapelle and director of the music for the Graf's Hunting Corps. (These works 10 marches, 15 dances and 6 Parthias are now published by Sarastro Music as SAR 0107 SAR 0109.) In 1817 he applied for a post at Oettingen-Wallerstein and it is his letter to them which contains the remarks about studying with Mozart and arranging his works for Harmoniemusik.
Goepfert was an excellent composer and arranger and he may very well have been the house arranger for Simrock in Bonn. This may explain his arrangements of Mozart's vocal works since Simrock published the originals between 1798 and 1800. He also prepared an octet version of Mozart's Gran Partita (also published by Sarastro Music), and arranged marches, the Paris Symphony (K. 297) and the Rondo alla Turca from the piano sonata K. 331. His arrangement of Haydn's Creation from 1817 remains lost, as do most of his works for clarinet. by Nessa Glen
15 Dances: 1. Schottische; 2. Schottische; 3. Schottische; 4. Schottische; 5. Schottische; 6. Schottische; 7. Walzer; 8. Menuetto; 9. Allemande; 10. untitled, probably a Landler; 11. Walzer; 12. Polonaise; 13. Alla Cosaca; 14. Polonaise; 15. Polonaise.