The parts for Sonata V in F are for two oboes (Hautbois 1 and Hautbois 2), bassoon (Fagotto), and a bass which could be played either by a violone, or a theorbo (Violone ò Tiorba, an instruction also seen on the bass part for Sonata VI). It is notable that a keyboard instrument is not specified for any one of Zelenka’s instrumental works, and figures on the bass line of the sonatas are either non-existent or sparse. Sonata V is the sole example among the six to be modelled upon the Vivaldian concerto structure: slow-quick-slow, and Zelenka’s use of ritornello form in the outer two movements could be seen as his homage to the Venetian master. The ritornello of the opening movement – a theme played in unison with reference to the polka rhythm – exhibits great strength. A series of harmonic surprises characterize the beautiful arioso-like slow movement, while the final Allegro which opens with a three-part fugal exposition, contains lengthy solos of intricate passage work that require extraordinary technique from each player.
from notes by Janice B Stockigt © 2012