Anton Reicha (1770- 1836)
Anton Reicha’s 24 wind quintets were composed in Paris between 1811 and 1820. They were a conscious attempt to fill a void in the repertoire for wind chamber works. Reicha later wrote “…there was a dearth not only of good classic music, but of any good music at all for wind instruments….” In general, the Quintets combined three major elements: 1. virtuoso display; 2. popular elements (Bohemian folk melodies, marches, etc.); and 3. an academic interest in variation form and counterpoint.
Published by Simrock in 1818-1819. Opus 91 number 3 (D major) was conceived as a lighthearted composition (with a complicated structure!); highlights from the various movements include:
First movement: A substantial flute cadenza in the slow introduction (Reicha’s first instrument was the flute); followed by a 6/8 scherzo theme. Overall homophonic tone. Second movement: Bel canto feel; operatic ritornello form (2 episodes); Third movement: Imitative counterpoint in the Trio; Fourth movement: a rondo with sonata form overlay.
This post is paraphrased from two articles: 1) Anton Reicha, Wikipedia, accessed 19.7.16; 2) Charles-David Lehrer, The Opus 91 wind Quintets of Antoine Reicha; http://www.idrs.org/scores/Lehrer2/Reicha/op91/no3.html