Ballade, Op 118 for flute sextet
This Ballade by Brahms is an energetic whirling musical gem. Most of it is percussive with a rhythm that needs crisp tonguing for best effect. It is great fun and not technically difficult beyond rhythmic accuracy at tempo. As most such compositions do, it has a relaxed brief interlude that transforms the melody into a more plaintive version. It is an excellent complement to more sedate selections in a program as it will give the audience a bit of sparkle.