A question was posted last night in the Horn People group about the top horn excerpts for study by high school students. It quickly received a variety of answers, some great, some a bit off track.
The correct answer would be one driven by a survey of the horn audition requirements for top level music schools for horn performance majors. And I have handy the results of a 2011 survey I did of that very type:
- Beethoven ‐ Symphony No.3, mvt. III, Scherzo‐Trio, horn 2
- Beethoven ‐ Symphony No. 6, mvt. III Allegro and opening of mvt. V Allegretto
- Brahms ‐ Symphony No. 3, mvt. III Poco allegretto, horn 1
- Mendelssohn ‐ Nocturne from “Midsummer Night’s Dream”
- Ravel – Pavan for a Dead Princess
- Shostakovitch ‐ Symphony No.5, low tutti
- Strauss ‐ Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks, opening calls, horn 1
- Tchaikovsky ‐ Symphony No. 5, mvt. II, horn 1
- Wagner ‐ Siegfried’s Rhine Journey, horn 1
This list and more may be found in a PDF document in our files area here. Your individual list could vary of course, driven by the requirements of schools you aspire to attend.
For some encouragement, I knew maybe five of the above excerpts when I was a high school senior and looking back I don’t think I played them very well. Which is to say there is still hope if you don’t have them all down when you are in high school, but if you have time and energy the above list is a great one to focus on learning, really for any serious student of the horn.