Cassation in G major, K. 63

The Cassation in G major, K. 63 is a cassation for orchestra by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, composed around 1769 for the celebration of finalists from the University of Salzburg (hence the common title "Finalmusik"). The work is one of three smaller-scale compositions, all written in 1769 (the others being K. 99/63a and 100/62a).

Portrait of Mozart by Jean-Baptiste Greuze, c. 1763



The first three of the nine large-scale orchestral serenades that Mozart composed for Salzburg between 1769 and 1779 all date from the former year, when he was 13, and none of them bears a title in his own hand. He did, however, in a letter he wrote to Nannerl from Bologna on 4 August 1770, refer to all three (giving the incipits of their introductory marches) as Cassationen—a term whose original meaning in a musical context has never been conclusively explained, although various suggestions have been put forward, most plausibly perhaps as outdoor music (from the contemporary Austrian expression gassatim gehen, i.e. 'to perform in the streets').[1]

Their exact chronology has not been established, but it is known that Finalmusiken by Mozart were performed on 6 and 8 August 1769, for the finalists in Logic and Physic, respectively, and it seems likely that the two works played were K. 63 and K. 99, both modestly scored and in seven movements, including a march. The grander K. 100 was probably written for another festive occasion, perhaps for the Archbishop, later in the summer.[2]

Scoring and structure


The work is scored for strings, two oboes and two horns. It is set in seven movements:

  1. Marche in G major
  2. Allegro in G major
  3. Andante in C major
  4. Minuet in G major (Trio in G minor)
  5. Adagio in D major
  6. Minuet in G major (Trio in C major)
  7. Finale: Allegro assai in G major

The work begins with a Marche (the French spelling here and in the fourth and fifth movements is Leopold's) full of busy triplets, and with the second half beginning in the relative minor. This is followed by a dashing Allegro with brilliant and often antiphonal violin parts, and some wide leaps of over an octave; by a gentle Andante (in C) for strings only, with muted violins and pizzicato lower strings (including divided violas); and by a forthright minuet with canonic effects, enclosing a hushed, secretive trio for strings alone, in G minor. The second slow movement, a tender Adagio in D and for strings again, with muted violins and violas (again divided), is the first of many in Mozart's Salzburg serenades in which the principal first violin emerges from the orchestra as a soloist. Next comes another minuet, in a jaunty dotted rhythm, framing a staccato trio in C for strings, with divided violas, and, to end with, a rondo in 6/8 "hunting" rhythm, with a minore episode.[2]




  1. ^ Unverricht, Hubert; Eisen, Cliff (2001). "Cassation". Grove Music Online (8th ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/gmo/9781561592630.article.05104. ISBN 978-1-56159-263-0.
  2. ^ a b Golding, Robin (1991). A Variety of Forms and Styles: Mozart's Serenades for Orchestra. Germany: Philips Classics Records. p. 21.