I. Allegro In ancient times, humans used to blow on animal horns before they started emulating them in metal. Early metal horns were constructed in a rather simple manner, consisting of metal tubes and a wide opening (often called “a bell”), with none of the valves that can be spotted on the modern horns. The change of pitch was totally controlled by the lips and the player mostly relied on natural series of overtones. These horns are thereforecalled “Natural Horns”. The fact that the players had to rely only on natural overtones crated a unique world of melodic expressions that evolved from thesehorns. These melodic expressions (such as “Horn Fifths”) are associated with horns until today. The Sonata op. 17 for Horn and Piano was written by Beethoven in 1800 for the Horn virtuoso Giovanni Punto,who used to play on a natural horn. Beethoven rapidly composed it one day prior to the concert.Even though the piece was hastily composed, its first movement, Allegro Moderato, presents a wonderful blend of typical hunting calls of the Horn and the tempestuous style of Beethoven’s middle period that started around that time.