6. Perhaps, with his advancing years and with dozens of symphonies under his belt, he was finally comfortable with his work? I was given the ridiculous task of listening to all of Haydn's 104 symphonies and putting them in order of brilliance (or not-so-brilliance). 45 in F♯ minor, known as the "Farewell" Symphony (German: Abschieds-Symphonie; modern orthography: German: Abschiedssinfonie), is a symphony dated 1772 on the autograph score. Symphony No. Tepid. 67There’s a nervous energy to no, 67, almost a rediscovery of a past vigour. Why won’t he let rip? It’s filled with surprising, new sounds- most notably the “Turkish” exoticism of the triangle, crash cymbals, and bass drum. The second movement of this symphony is one of Haydn’s more obvious jokes, in which the audience is lulled into a false sense of security and then suddenly shocked by a loud chord. There are three statements of a four measure motif. 15Real talk: the opening to this symphony is deathly. It is a tad sluggish though, you might even call it dramatic and *whispers reverently* romantic. Everything about it is fizzy and furious, relentlessly energetic save for the stately slow movement and the trio, which uses a detuned violin to create a rather nice drone effect. So I have decided to update i... UPDATE: As this post is getting a lot of attention, I have gone through and updated all the clips as my original choices all disappeared. Oh how they must have laughed, those 18th century boffins, as they caught wind of Haydn’s little game. 56One of Haydn’s longest at over half an hour, but does he manage to fill it with enough decent tunes? 11From the outset, it’s clear that Haydn was in a thinking kind of mood when jotting down this symphony. The "Farewell" symphony, no. Maybe a cameo from Zac Efron. By which time you’d probably be in the middle of a battle. 74, he proves that a little patience is worth it. Even with only seven symphonies to his name, Haydn was using every trick in the book to extend his melodies. Tolerably exhausting, like a strenuous playfight with an older sibling. 9, third movement. Movements. Symphony No. In one place it can't seem to decide if it wants to be in the key of B minor or C major and comes to a half-cadence spelled as a kind of mixture of both: Just before we were pretty clearly in B minor, but in this passage Haydn moves one step higher. 79 is Haydn back to his (conservatively) experimental old self once again. 17. Symphony No. It’s balanced by some of the earliest meaningful woodwind parts in a Haydn symphony (hello tinkly flute lines), and the composer’s usual flourishes, but the sheer impact of those first few minutes are what it’s all about. 91There’s some reworked material from Handel’s Ariadne of Naxos buried in here, which perhaps explains why it feels more like accompaniment without melody to begin with. ... UPDATE: This post has been particularly hit with a bad case of link-rot, so I am replacing all the original musical clips with new ones. Less than 10 minutes, no repeats, some pleasant themes and a small spotlight for the violas. 4Confusing filler. A typical performance of the symphony lasts around twenty-five minutes. 72Scale exercises for horn, then some garbled tooting. 82 (‘The Bear’)Fittingly, given the subtitle, this was the biggest symphony in terms of sheer manpower that Haydn had written in his career. Like Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Symphony No. So we propose a new nickname: ‘The really good’. 47 (‘Palindrome’)Is this the ultimate Haydn joke? Symphony No. Supreme stuff. But then it turned out that it actually happened at a different premiere (symphony no. Look, we’ve listened to 95 of these symphonies in a row. It was written for Haydn's patron, Prince, , while he, Haydn and the court orchestra were at the Prince's summer palace in, . Start studying Haydn Symphony 104 - Movement 1. Symphony No. Well… aside from some neat and intricate small ensemble work in the third movement, there’s not a whole lot to write home about in 56. Angular, interlocking lines of melody wind around each other most attractively and inventively in the first movement, while the third features an impish trick - deliberately leaving one poor musician a quaver behind the pack to make the whole thing sound bowlegged and clumsy. Symphony No. It was one of the works that helped Haydn's 4-movement symphony become the standard that would define orchestral music for generations. Joseph Haydn's Symphony No. The first is tonic/subdominant, the second dominant seventh/tonic. Symphony No. 74You could accuse Haydn of being the king of plod, needlessly dragging things out for far longer than necessary by repeating them or marking them at slow tempos. 4. 66If we were making a movie with the first movement of this symphony as a soundtrack, it would be a whimsical comedy starring Cameron Diaz as a beleaguered ‘always the bridesmaid’-type character. Well, it’s funny to musos, anyway. 53 (‘L’imepriale’)Puff out your chest and revel in Haydn’s most overtly stately symphony. Haydn — Symphony No. So forget that. A trifle long at over 20 minutes, but there are probably just about enough ideas flying around to keep the interest. The bookend movements here are strong, but the middle is a bit of a plod. 58. Symphony No. Normally the minuet is the one place where nothing too outrageous happens, but not this one. 29OK, so there’s a weird thing about the melody in the third movement - basically, it’s supposed to be improvised by the harpsichord, but generally people don’t bother to put it in. Should’ve stayed in the desk-drawer. Hard to tell. 17If you were to listen to Haydn’s symphonies in chronological order, no. ", The "Farewell"Symphony, dating from 1772, could be Haydn's most well-known and popular symphony. Symphony No. 50After a run of some really strong symphonies throughout the ‘40s, no. 45; 第45号交响曲 (海顿); Прощальна симфонія; Simfonia núm. 28Aggressively good stuff all the way through. Once it gets going, though, it’s pretty good. Symphony No. Hurried, confused, atmospheric in the first movement, fairly standard in the middle two and truly belting in the last, it’s a strong contender. 104. Not a classic, but solid enough. It also features prominent brass passages for the horn. It’s entertaining, for sure, but the emotional through-line isn’t quite as clear as it could be. Symphony No. "You are a teacher, a stimulating conversant, and an intellectual I find engaging because yours is not a formulaic or ideological approach, but rather combining contemplation with an unfinished and authentic quest for truth, and that in the human experiential rather than religious dogmatic sense. 36. Symphony No. But the real meat here is in the second movement, one of his loveliest Adagios and a bittersweet treat. Very good value. Symphony No. It is likely that the symphony was nicknamed ‘The Clock’ because of the continuous quavers in the second movement. 50 in C major (1773 and 1774) Symphony No. 104 (‘London’)Another belting opening, after the daring drumroll of no. For that chutzpah alone, we approve - it keeps things brief and breezy for the remainder. Symphony No. Symphony No. 63You know when Judi Dench turned up at the end of Shakespeare In Love for about 2 minutes and still managed to win an Oscar, despite doing very little apart from wearing some intimidating make-up? A good first movement, plenty of winds in the slow and an ecstatic rondo to finish it off. There’s nothing wrong with it, but it’s one of the most inconspicuous. Impressive, but we’re not sure why. Haydn phoning it in, no major stylistic tics or inventions.82. Symphony No. Oh, and a nice slow movement. He even goes as far as recycling his own material from the ‘Farewell’ symphony in the first movement. 51 in B ♭ major (1773/1774) Symphony No. The stay there had been longer than expected, and most of the musicians had been forced to leave their wives back at home in, , so in the last movement of the symphony, Haydn subtly hinted to his patron that perhaps he might like to allow the musicians to return home: during the final, each musician stops playing, snuffs out the candle on his music stand, and leaves in turn, so that at the end, there are just two. Extra marks for death-avoiding dramatic premiere. Symphony No. Symphony No. In line with the historical context of the work, your CSO musicians will snuff out their candles and leaving the stage at the close of Haydn's Symphony No. Symphony No. Fortunately, the music is cracking, full of verve and gumption. Symphony No. Great writing here at the music salon by the way - I just found the site recently and have been really enjoying it. Symphony No. There’s a dignity, a quietness, a latent darkness even - all of the appropriate funereal emotions, basically. Thanks for your devotion and hard work on this blog. Often, it works beautifully and you can basically get away with it because they’re so logical. Plenty of crunchy dissonance, quirky rhythmic ideas and spicy dynamics. Not without interest, but there’s so much better to come. Well, he picked wisely. By which we mean there are plenty of sneaky dissonances to enjoy, bumptious horns aplenty and a very sweet slow movement. 1It opens with a nifty, nippy crescendo, but then doesn’t do very much at all. 99. 11. 103. 90It’s easy to dismiss the false ending in this symphony as a naff gag, but can you imagine what audiences must’ve thought the first time it played out? Unless you look a bit more closely at the chronology of what was composed when, in which case that argument falls apart. He described them as “very easy, and without too much concertante – for the English gentlemen.” Translation = English people aren’t clever enough for ‘La Passione’.40. At this relatively early stage in his career, Haydn clearly knows what he’s doing and is still smashing out melodies like there’s no tomorrow, his symphonies are becoming interchangeable. In fact, you can hear a perfect example of it in the first movement of Beethoven’s Symphony … Esterházy seems to have understood the message: the court returned to Eisenstadt the day following the performance. 79. 61. 97Super-chromatic from the outset, it’s as if old man Haydn is drunkenly scrawling across the manuscript, a smouldering fag-end perched on a shelf, dangerously close to his glass of Riesling. 43. 32Early-mid-period filler. The opening phrase of the finale is as perfect an eight-measure period as one could ask for: Four measures ending with a half-cadence answered by four measures ending with a full cadence and nicely balanced in register (the phrase actually ends with an F# on the first beat of the next line). Perhaps it was encountering young upstarts like Mozart that spurred him on once again, but this is a great example of tunes being equal with special effects. It’s another of his stylistic tics, little amusements that he incorporated no-doubt to entertain himself as much as the audience. Forget the rest of the symphony - splendid as it is, it’s all about the first minute. Symphony No. He only gives us half of that opening period before returning to working new developments of the motifs. The Symphony No. Just look at the third movement - nothing but wind, and a sweet flute solo. 65It’s nice to note that Haydn’s slow movements get more interesting, daring and deep as the opus number increases. In truth, the symphony itself suffers from a slightly excessively meandering opening movement, but it’s the beginning of one of the composer’s most attractive musical guises. The second movement here shows exactly why, with one of the first showcases he ever gave to the instrument. 76. 83. 40Numbered 40, but actually dates from the early teens. 76, though, there’s something deliciously unexpected about the melodies - lines go up where you expect them to go down, arpeggios rattle quite illogically at times, and soon you’re unsure whether to follow the bassoon or the strings. 22 (‘The Philosopher’)One of the first times we hear Haydn’s ‘effects’ within a symphony. 99A symphony of amazing moments, rather than a complete thematic success. This is a period of high quality in general, but there is little that stands out except the ones I've mentioned in my opinion. Disappointing. Vitezslav Novak 37. Symphony No. 41. 1 Performances. Approved. 78, a decade later) and the key scheme of the movements correspondingly striking: F# minor, A major, F# major F# minor moving at the end to major. 27. 75 / Carl Maria von Weber -- Mass no. Symphony No. Let’s put it mid-table. Even the slow second movement (with which Haydn generally had mixed success) is passably sweet without distracting from the nippy numbers either side of it. Haydn's Allegretto tempo keeps the movement in the realm of the minuet as opposed to the quicker scherzo. Symphony No. But with the second movement of no. 21You get the impression here that Haydn felt he’d got the whole symphony thing sewn up. Symphony No. 77 is the perfect accompaniment to jumping methodically into a series of puddles. Haydn’s fourth movement of this symphony is formulated as a Sonata-Rondo movement. Though the melodies are undoubtedly fine, they are also languorous, slow, and perhaps overly dainty.80. 38 (‘Echo’)Basically a gimmick. An early sign in Haydn’s career that he knew how to craft tension, to elicit wonder and ecstasy, all with a gentle crescendo. Symphony No. Not challenging technically, but to nail that lyricism is a rare and satisfying thing. 71Ah, sweet melancholy, you have returned! The first movement plunges immediately into a main theme of disarming sinew, with the first violins striding … No-one's here for accuracy. 35In No. Heavy. 9A bit of an autopilot symphony. 37Another chronologically mislabeled symphony. 49. Imagine being hounded by an ex-lover who still has your bank details and has been completely inaccurate when dividing your possessions. Do not be fooled: it’s a fairly boring early one.90. 23. 51. The second movement is, however, an absolutely transparent whopper. 78. The new theme is in D major: After repeating this theme a couple of times, interspersed with a bit of the motivic working of the first theme, Haydn moves right into a very compressed recapitulation. 50. 54As Haydn gradually worked his way around the orchestra, so his explorations into the properties of individual instruments became stronger. 64 (’Tempora mutantur’)The literal translation of the full tempo marking at the beginning of no. Symphony No. 56. An early sign of huge promise, but one that lacks maturity.98. It’s no wonder that this one remains relatively popular among his output - it’s clever, sweet and fun. 27Chronologically, this one was written much earlier than you’d think, given it’s numerical placing within Haydn’s canon. This is probably due to a charming bit of "stage business" that ends the work. 16There’s an impressive cello ‘moment’ here in the middle movement that earmarks the instrument as one of Haydn’s favourites. 58After the righteous anger and heartfelt melancholy of the 40s, the 50s seems to be Haydn’s rather less exciting comedown. 80Along with 79 and 81, a loose trilogy is formed with this symphony, which seems to revel in a bit more musical freedom than Haydn was used to. Another little development follows, modulating to B minor and ending in a half-cadence. Skip over. 70. Aside from Haydn’s development of the Classical orchestra into a form very similar to that of the present-day Symphony Orchestra, Haydn created the musical form or structure of the symphony that largely held firm until the late 19 th century. Look, ENOUGH HORNS. 2 - it’s short. Joseph Haydn was born in Rohrau, Austria in 1732, was known for composing works that had the ability to produce a quality of music that very little were able to imitate. 34There’s a sense of melancholy here, something that was to seep into Haydn’s middle period with more intensity, but in No. Enjoyable, if not especially memorable. 26. Symphony No. 14There’s an absolutely ingenious movement here, the finale, that bases all of its material on one descending scale. Symphony No. Symphony No. 8. 5. The third kind comes in mm. Congratulations for running a comments section full of enlightening aesthetic debates. 45 (‘Farewell’)There’s a terrific story about the last movement (you know, it’s the one where the instruments stop one by one and the players walk out - it was made as a sort of 18th century musicians’ union statement), but you have to trudge through quite a lot of standard Haydn to get there. 45 in the unusual key of F-sharp minor was composed in 1772. 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