Recommended Listening: Mozart’s “Haffner” Serenade, Mvt. 8

Several years ago, I picked up a CD called Mozart for the Morning Commute, which as its subtitle claims, really is “a lively bit of traveling music.”  Each piece selected for this anthology is marked “allegro” or “rondo,” meaning that they’re all pretty catchy, having quick tempos and repeating, almost pop-like themes. 

Though this disc seems to be out of print, plenty of copies, both used and new, are available through usual online sellers, including individual tracks for download.  My favorite by far–one that I can just listen to over and over again–is track seven, the 8th movement of Mozart’s Serenade no. 7, named for the Haffner family that commissioned it for a wedding.  It’s a perfect example of what this collection was meant to capture: one can hardly listen to it without thinking of movement.  Its almost childlike in its simple exuberance, the sound of kids skipping through a sunny meadow in June. 

Unfortunately,I couldn’t find a clip of the exact version on this disc to use here, but the one below is pretty close: it really picks up at around 2:20, with the theme–which could rival the hook of any top 40 chorus–coming in first at 3:50.

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