Bernhard Krol’s Laudatio is an unaccompanied work for horn.  It is a standard work in the repertoire and appears often on competition lists.  It is playable by high school students and is a good introduction to playing unaccompanied music.  The structure of the work is based on its title, meaning to praise, or give commendation.  The melodic motive is derived from the segment of the sequence, Te Deum Laudamus, which translates to “We Praise Thee, O God.”  This song of thanksgiving is the basis of the opening motive of Laudatio.1 

 The piece, divided into three large sections, does not have an indicated meter.  Pacing is suggested by the use of double bars and fermatas.  The opening motif, notably its minor second interval, is the most important element of the work, as it sets the tone for the rest of the piece.  The first section concludes at the end of the fourth line with a quasi-cadence.  The second section of the piece begins at the grave, suggesting the ringing of church bells.  This segment also contains more descending half-step motives that occur before the chant, Te Deum Laudamus.  This section ends with another quasi-cadence that continues the tension.  The third section quickly expands dynamically and rhythmically to a climax that ultimately returns to the opening motive.  The work ends with a solemn, reflective return to a meditation on the opening motive.  Ultimately the work closes with the same motive with which it began; however, it concludes with the piece’s only true cadence. 

 

Composer Krol, Bernhard
Dates (b. 1920)
Duration 4:00
Horn Range Db3 to Bb5
Level Medium/Difficult
Clef Treble Clef
Techniques Mute
Era/Style 20th Century
Country/Region Germany
Accompaniment Available Unaccompanied
Accompaniment Difficulty N/A
Movements One Movement

 

1Gayle Chesebro, “Laudatio: an Analysis,” The Horn Call X, no. 1 (October 1979): 51.