Trio di Clarone

Trio di Clarone

Dedicated music lovers will certainly be familiar with the basset horn, a rare instrument belonging to the clarinet family. It was famously used in Mozart’s Requiem KV 626, which owes its melancholy sound, which is almost impossible to describe, to this mellow and sombre-toned instrument.

The clarinet player, however, will be aware that this instrument is extremely difficult to master technically, particularly with respect to intonation. A trio of basset horns would probably have been unthinkable had it not been for Mozart and his five divertimenti written specifically for this instrumental grouping.

Mozart seems to have had a particular fondness for the basset horn during the last years of his life. Some even believe that the basset horn was his favourite instrument. Although many of his compositions for basset horns are little-known today, the five above-mentioned divertimenti (KV 439 b) survived throughout the last two centuries, but only as an arrangement for two clarinets and bassoon.

When Sabine Meyer, her brother Wolfgang and the clarinettist Reiner Wehle from Hanover came together to form the TRIO DI CLARONE in 1983, one of the driving forces was their interest in how the original divertimenti might have sounded.