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Symphony No. 40, K550


Pan - Journal of the British Flute Society

This review first appeared in Pan, the journal of the British Flute Society and is reproduced with permission. Join the BFS: membership starts from £20 a year.

This is an unabridged arrangement of the complete symphony, in the original keys, for a flute ensemble comprising piccolo, G treble, 4 flutes, alto, bass, contralto, contrabass and optional sub contra and double contra. The middle movements use reduced forces in a four part texture.

The original score is treated with respect, and it is nice to see the whole array of the flute family used to benefit from the whole range of available tessitura, which contributes towards creating an orchestral sound. For practical purposes the parts are graded in terms of difficulty, which is ideal for educational purposes (although perhaps not so ideal for a group of matching level players). Te majority of the important melodic material is therefore in the first flute part, but interest is maintained even within the accompaniment parts.

The light energy of the original score has been retained in this arrangement, and there are also opportunities for lyrical playing at appropriate moments. As such, this arrangement serves as a worthy introduction to Mozart’s symphonic writing for flute players, helping to develop the right kind of tone colour, rhythmic control and shaping of the phrases. The music is enjoyable to play and could be tackled by an intermediate ensemble

Carla Rees

From the Publisher

A full flute choir arrangement of the whole symphony.

Difficulty guide: 3
Difficulty level, roughly compared to ABRSM exam grades. 0 is beginner, 9 is advanced (beyond grade 8).

Item Details


  • Part 1: Piccolo
  • Part 2: Flute
  • Part 3: Flute
  • Part 4: Flute
  • Part 5: Flute
  • Part 6: Flute
  • Part 7: Alto Flute
  • Part 8: Bass Flute
  • Part 9: Contr'alto Flute
  • Part 10: Contrabass Flute
  • Part 11 (Optional): Sub-Contrabass Flute in G
  • Part 12 (Optional): Double Contrabass Flute in C
Category: Flute Orchestra Music
Publisher: Forton Music
Publisher's reference: FM700
Our Stock Code: 1432305
Media Type: Paperback (36 pages [score])