Haydn’s genius as a composer of symphonies and Mozart’s genius as an opera composer stand out for players and audiences alike. By the time the two Haydn symphonies in this programme were written (1772), Haydn had been at the court in Esterhazy for a decade. He knew his musicians, the Prince and his courtiers very well, and he understood their musical tastes. He knew how to excite them with his stream of new symphonies in which he constantly stretched the boundaries of the genre. We take a snap shot of Haydn at his most inventive and creative in which he teases us with witty ideas, sets up our expectations only to thwart them and plays with our emotions from the heights and the depths.
Fifteen years later, in 1787, Mozart was writing arguably the most dramatic opera of his life – the incomparable Don Giovanni. In order to experience substantial works in a chamber setting it was a common practice to create arrangements – of operas in particular, and this version for wind octet highlights the drama of Don Giovanni with brilliance and charm.
Joseph Haydn (1732–1809)
Symphony No. 47 The Palindrome in G major
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756–1791)
Wind octet arrangements from Don Giovanni
Symphony No. 44 Trauer in E minor
This concert was performed at The London International Festival of Early Music, St Michael & All Angels Church, London on 10th November 2023.
Running time: 1 hour 10 mins
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