About this Piece
Composed: 1779 or 1780
Length: c. 6 minutes
Orchestration: 2 oboes, 2 horns, strings, and solo flute
First Los Angeles Philharmonic performance: August 16, 1973, with soloist Jean-Pierre Rampal, Edo De Waart conducting
The exquisite Andante in C, K. 315, although sometimes regarded as part of the De Jean commission - a possible alternative slow movement for the first Flute Concerto, K. 313 - has scholars speculating that it dates from a year or two later, 1779 or 1780: something to do with the kind of paper on which it was written. It is one of those wonderful instrumental "arias" Mozart could not help writing, in which the human voice is an unheard but suggested presence: "The flute pours forth its joy and sadness," wrote Neal Zaslaw in The Compleat Mozart, "above the sympathetic murmurings of the orchestra, like the heroine of a pastoral opera of the period."
- Herbert Glass, after many years as a columnist for the Los Angeles Times, has for the past decade been the English-language annotator and editor for the Salzburg Festival.