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Recommended for music exams:
Grades: FRSM Certificate
Grades: FTCL Certificate
Carl Nielsen’s flute concerto is, together with Jacques Ibert’s, among the most popular and most widely performed flute concertos of the 20th Century.
It was composed for the Danish flautist Holger Gilbert-Jespersen (1890-1974), during an Italian soujurn in 1926. Gilbert-Jespersen himself was the soloist at the concerto’s world premiere in Maison Gaveau (Salle des Concerts) in Paris on October 21st 1926. That concert consisting entirely of music by Carl Nielsen was attended by the composer’s colleagues Maurice Ravel, Gabriel Pierné and Arthur Honegger; and it became a great personal success for the composer. Honegger wrote a review, which appeared in Politiken on October 26th.
In early January 1927, following the first two performances in Paris and Oslo, Carl Nielsen wrote a new, 72 bars longer ending. This was the way the concerto was performed at its Danish premiere on 25 January 1927; and this ending has been the standard version ever since.