Two Mozart Minuets

4 April 2015
This paper compares Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Minuet for String from his Quintet in D Major to his Minuet No. 6 and gives background information.

The author states many music historians believe that Mozart attained his greatest heights as a composer with his string quintets. The paper analyzes the minuet as a musical translation of popular musical dances of the era and compares the two minuets. The paper continues that it is important to recognize that listeners of Mozart today are different from listeners in Mozart’s day. The author concludes that, to understand Mozart’s Minuets, the listener must explore the roots of the form of the piece and the piece’s history.
“Before analyzing the pieces themselves, one must first consider exactly what a minuet is. A minuet is dance in a moderate triple time. It has a light texture. “Some minuets have a cross-rhythm that makes two bars of 3/4 sound like one bar of 3/2 (as in courante).

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Unlike other dances, it is often in ternary form. It is one of the only Baroque dance forms that survived into the late symphony of the Classical era, besides the trio.” From a listener’s point of view, this light or sprightly texture translates into an almost humorous, dancing quality to the music.”

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