Andrew Manze Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Mozart's last three symphonies

Oslo Concert Hall Concert has been played

Conductor Andrew Manze

Photo Nikolaj Lund

Mozart's last three symphonies

Andrew Manze conducts Mozart's last three symphonies, No. 39, 40, and 41, which the composer wrote during some busy summer weeks in 1788. At this concert, you can experience the symphonies as a unit, with the Jupiter Symphony as a terrific ending.

It is unknown if Mozart had a particular occasion in mind when he started on Symphony No. 39 in the early summer of 1788. He may have planned a concert series at a casino, but the series could not be carried out. Austria declared war against the Ottoman Empire in February of the same year, dramatically affecting Vienna's inhabitants. Mozart's revenue stemmed from the city's wealthiest, who now was engaged in the war or had moved out of town. Thus began Mozart's financial difficulties, which, together with the war, marked the rest of his life.

The famous Austrian conductor Nikolaus Harnoncourt believed Mozart wrote the three symphonies as a whole, as they are performed at this concert (there is an intermission between No. 40 and 41). Symphony No. 39 opens with a majestic introduction to the first movement, but the fourth movement is not similarly grand. Symphony No. 41 ends in return with one of Mozart's most thrilling and powerful final movements. If this was the intention, Mozart probably did not experience them this way. But he probably heard some of them performed in his lifetime.  

Symphony No. 40 opens with one of Mozart's most famous melodies. Perhaps the introduction's nervous, almost angsty mood expresses his state of mind this summer. He did not suffer only financial difficulties - he lost his youngest daughter, Theresia, at the end of June. There was also a tendency in contemporary literature and music to allow darker and more conflicted emotions to come to the surface - a movement often called Sturm und Drang - "storm and longing." 

Symphony No. 41, with the nickname "Jupiter," is the longest of Mozart's symphonies, and it is the one written for the largest orchestra. Mozart's youngest son, Franz Xaver, called the symphony's last movement "the greatest triumph of instrumental music." He claimed it was Johann Peter Salomon who came up with the name for the symphony - a German impresario who worked with Mozart, Hayden, and Beethoven. The Jupiter Symphony set a new standard for the symphony format and became a starting point for the landmark symphonies Beethoven would write in the following decades. 

About Andrew Manze

Andrew Manze is widely celebrated as one of the most stimulating and inspirational conductors of his generation. His extensive and scholarly knowledge of the repertoire, together with his boundless energy and warmth, mark him out. He was Chief Conductor of the NDR Radiophilharmonie, Hannover, from September 2014 and until summer 2023. In the 2018/19 season he was appointed Principal Guest Conductor of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra.

What is played

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Symphony No. 39
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Symphony No. 40
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Symphony No. 41





Price groups Price
Adult 175 - 580 NOK
Senior 175 - 465 NOK
Student 175 - 290 NOK
Child 150 NOK


Andrew Manze Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Oslo Concert Hall Concert has been played