This is a major work for horn and smallish orchestra. In fact, it’s difficult to think of a bigger or more demanding Horn Concerto. Originally, the first movement, Sonata, was composed as a stand-alone movement, but later the composer realised the need to add two more movements to create a conventional concerto. In the slow second movement, the harp has an important role while the strings provide a cushion above which the music plays itself out. Before the lively Rondo finale, is a cadenza in which the horn is accompanied by the timpani.
Repertoire Note by Peter Marchbank