Six German Dances was arranged for Double Reed Ensemble at the request of Dr. Jose Diaz, Interim Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Humanities at California State University, Fresno for the Ninth Annual Double Reed Day, Saturday, February 5, 2005. Dr. Diaz also serves as a Professor of Music and more specifically, Oboe, at this institution. Mr. Larry Gardner, Bassoon Instructor at California State University, Fresno, and Dr. Diaz host a very popular weekend for double reed enthusiasts every year and one of the highlights of the event is having nearly 100 double reed artists take the stage all at once for a massed ensemble of oboes, English horns, bassoons and contra-bassoons. The site and sound are quite a spectacle.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote the Six German Dances originally for 2 violins, contra-bass violin, 2 flutes, piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 trumpets, 2 horns and timpani. This delightful work moves through a variety of keys and moods. Mozart retains a 3/8 time signature throughout the work as he moves masterfully from one German dance to the next.