Composed by Arthur Sullivan
For Woodwind Quintet
Arranged by Robert Rainford
Published by Forton Music
Includes score and parts
Flute, Oboe, Bb Clarinet, Horn in F, and Bassoon
Although he is now known almost exclusively for his comic operattas, generally in collaboration with W.S. Gilbert, in his youth Arthur Sullivan was regarded as an extremely promising classical composer. The son of a military bandmaster he showed great ability from an early age, composing his first anthem at the age of eight. He was awarded the very first Mendelssohn Scholarship from the Royal College of Music in 1856, allowing him to study at the Academy and after that at the Leipzig Conservatoire in Germany. The string quartet that this wind quintet is arranged from dates from the time of his studies in Germany, and was a piece he sent home for his mother. It's not known if he intended it to be a stand alone, one movement piece or if he was going to write more movements later, but as the piece stands it shows great maturity and melodic invention. With a short, slow introduction followed by a faster, more involved section it does sound like the standard first movement of a string quartet, a form that all composition students at the time would be expected to master.
This wind quintet version has been freely prepared from the string quartet, and the dynamics and articulation are largely editorial, and may be altered to suit the desires of the players.