A History of European Music, Part 3
From the desk of Fjordman on Thu, 2009-07-09 13:51
The Austrian Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) was the most celebrated composer of his day, prolific in every medium, but best remembered for his numerous symphonies and string quartets, which established standards of form and quality that others emulated. “Haydn has been called ‘the father of the symphony,’ not because he invented the genre but because his symphonies set the pattern for later composers through their high quality, wide dissemination, and lasting appeal.” He was born in a village near the border of Hungary and became a choirboy at St. Stephen’s Cathedral in Vienna at the age of seven, where he acquired practical experience in music and learned signing, harpsichord and violin. He spent most of his career serving the Esterházy family, the most powerful Hungarian noble family. For years he was responsible for composing on demand at a prodigious rate, but this also allowed him the opportunity to experiment and to hear his music performed under excellent conditions.
In addition to being an Enlightenment man of good character, Haydn was a skillful businessman. The publication of his music brought him praise throughout Europe and generated commissions from other patrons. He spent much time in London between 1790 and 1795, composing, giving concerts and teaching. “During his stay in London, Haydn became acquainted with some of Handel’s oratorios. At Westminster Abbey in 1791, Haydn was so deeply moved by the Hallelujah Chorus in a massive performance of Messiah that he burst into tears and exclaimed, ‘He is the master of us all.’ Haydn’s appreciation for Handel bore fruit in the choral parts of his late masses and inspired him to compose his oratorios The Creation (completed 1798), on texts adapted from Genesis and Milton’s Paradise Lost, and The Seasons (completed 1801). Both were issued simultaneously in German and English, in a nod both to Handel and to the English public, and both quickly became standards of the repertory for choral societies in German- and English-speaking areas.”
Haydn made his last public appearance for a performance of The Creation to celebrate his seventy-sixth birthday in 1808, the culmination of over half a century of hard work. His total output includes over 100 symphonies and 68 string quartets as well as piano sonatas, operas, masses and oratorios.
Another brilliant Austrian composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791), achieved wide renown earlier in his life than Haydn did. He was born in Salzburg, a quasi-independent state ruled by an archbishop. His father Leopold Mozart (1719-1787) was a violinist for the archbishop, a well-regarded composer and the author of a celebrated treatise on violin playing. He sacrificed his own career to give his exceptionally gifted son and his talented daughter Maria Anna Mozart (1751-1829), nicknamed “Nannerl,” a good musical training.
According to the quality website The Mozart Project, “It took all of thirty minutes for Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart to master his first musical composition….Below it Leopold jotted: ‘This piece was learnt by Wolfgangerl on 24 January 1761, 3 days before his 5th birthday, between 9 and 9:30 in the evening.’ Wolfgang's achievement was followed in rapid succession by others: a minuet and trio ‘learned within a half an hour’ on January 26, a march learned on February 4, another scherzo on February 6. It wasn't long before the little boy entered a composition of his own into the notebook. At six measures, this andante in C major (K. 1a) is a mere wisp of a work. Other small compositions would follow. Inconsequential as they were, these bits and pieces were tokens of greater things to come. No doubt, the boy held great promise as a composer. But Leopold, who could clearly see and hear his children's daily progress as keyboard performers, had more immediate aims. He began to neglect his court career and devote more time to Wolfgang and Nannerl’s musical instruction. Ambitious plans began to take shape in his mind. Partly out of parental pride, partly out of a sense of duty, he determined to take his two musical prodigies on tour to the courts of Europe.”
When Wolfgang and to some extent his older sister Nannerl showed great talent at an early age, Leopold trained them in music and took them on tours across Europe, exhibiting their skills. In London, the young Wolfgang met Johann Christian Bach, who had a lasting influence on the boy. He eventually became acquainted with by Johann Sebastian Bach’s The Art of Fugue and studied Handel’s works. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart composed prolifically from the age of six to his premature death at thirty-five and was hailed as a child prodigy.
According to A History of Western Music, Seventh Edition: “And prodigy he was: by the age of three he had developed perfect pitch; at five he was an accomplished harpsichord player; at six he was composing; at seven he could read at sight, harmonize melodies on first hearing, and improvise on a tune supplied to him. Though arduous, these trips exposed Mozart to an enormous range of musical styles. He also composed at a stupendous rate, turning out thirty-four symphonies, sixteen quartets, five operas, and over one hundred other works before his eighteenth birthday. Mozart spent the years 1772 to 1780 in Salzburg as third concert master at Archbishop Colloredo’s court. In 1781, over his father’s objections, he left the archbishop’s service and settled in Vienna, convinced that he could make a living through teaching, concertizing, and composing. Indeed he quickly won success, establishing himself as the best pianist in Vienna and enjoying a triumph with his Singspiel Die Entführung aus dem Serail. With his father’s grudging consent, he married Constanze Weber in the summer of 1782. Their marriage was happy and affectionate. Four children died in infancy, but two sons lived into adulthood, the younger becoming a composer.”
Constanze Mozart (1762-1842) was to outlive her famous husband by half a century. Composing at a prodigious pace, teaching private students, performing in public and private concerts and selling his works to publishers brought Mozart a good income. During visits to Vienna, Haydn met Mozart around 1784, and their admiration for each other’s music was mutual. At a quartet party, Haydn told Leopold, “Before God and as an honest man I tell you that your son is the greatest composer known to me either in person or by name. He has taste and, what is more, the most profound knowledge of composition.” Mozart became a Freemason in 1784, as did many prominent figures of his time.
Mozart was a virtuoso pianist. His nineteen piano sonatas are among his most popular compositions, studied by countless piano students since then. Although he wrote symphonies and other works as well, opera was still the most prestigious musical genre. One of the leading opera composers at Vienna was Christoph Gluck (1714-1787). Mozart eagerly sought opportunities to compose for the stage, and his first great success was Die Entführung aus dem Serail (1782). His next operas were Italian comic operas, The Marriage of Figaro from 1786 and Don Giovanni, which premiered in Prague in 1787. His successful The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflöte in German) premiered in Vienna in September 1791, just a few months before he died, on 5 December 1791. Mozart’s last year was a very productive one and included his unfinished Requiem, his final work and widely considered one of his best.
Ibn Warraq has showed in his book Defending the West how many European scholars and artists even during the colonial period were willing to give credit to the achievements of other peoples and were genuinely curious of their culture and history:
“Western art has, in the words of Roger Scruton, ‘continuously ventured into spiritual territory that has no place on the Christian map,’ and has done so with generosity, tolerance, affection, and a noble vision of universal humanity. Literature and music, as much as painting and architecture, has acknowledged other civilizations and other peoples, embraced them as equals, and sometimes treated them as superior souls from which the West could learn. In her biography of Mozart as a dramatist, Brigid Brophy includes as dazzling chapter on the exotic in eighteenth-century art, reminding us of Western humankind’s ventures ‘to unpath’d waters, undreamed shores’: China, Turkey, Persia, Babylon, Egypt, Abyssinia, South America, India, and even outer space. Brophy sings the virtues of Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail (Il Seraglio) and Die Zauberflöte, and places them firmly within the Enlightenment’s cosmopolitanism and its educative program: ‘To admire and copy foreign countries inside Europe was scarcely less obligatory than to admire, collect and copy the exotic products of other continents.’”
Mozart’s almost six hundred compositions are numbered chronologically in a thematic catalogue compiled by the Austrian musicologist Ludwig von Köchel (1800-1877) in 1862, whose “K” numbers (K for Köchel) are universally used to identify Mozart’s compositions. The music of Haydn’s and Mozart’s age was moving away from the traditional polyphony of the Baroque period towards homophony. Classical homophony is in many ways the opposite of polyphonic counterpoint. The age from second half of the eighteenth century until the early 1800s is often called the Viennese Classical or simply the Classical period of European music. Beethoven was a transitional figure between the Classical and the Romantic periods.
The brilliant composer Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) was born in Bonn in northwestern Germany, where his grandfather and father were musicians at the court of the Elector of Cologne. From early childhood he studied piano and violin with his father, who hoped to make him into a famous child prodigy like Mozart. The boy received further training from local musicians, but eventually settled in the Vienna of Haydn and Mozart, which was the musical capital of Europe. “There is still no department of music that does not owe him its very soul,” writes music historian Paul Lang, who speaks of Beethoven’s “unique position in the world of music - even in the whole history of civilization.” A History of Western Music, Seventh Edition, by Donald J. Grout, Peter J. Burkholder and Claude V. Palisca, elaborates:
“Beethoven traveled to Vienna in 1787 and probably met Mozart, then moved to Vienna for good in 1792. His first teacher there was Haydn, with whom he studied counterpoint, at the same time cultivating patrons among the aristocracy. His compositions ranged widely, from music for amateurs to virtuoso works for himself and from private works for connoisseurs to public symphonies. Confident in his own worth as an artist, Beethoven treated his aristocratic sponsors with independence and even occasional rudeness. His presumptions of social equality led him repeatedly to fall in love with women and noble rank….Beethoven never established a permanent home, moving more than two dozen times during his thirty-five years in Vienna. A gradual loss of hearing provoked a crisis around 1802, from which he emerged with new resolve to compose works of unprecedented scope and depth. The music of the next dozen years established him as the most popular and critically acclaimed composer alive. Through sales to publishers and support from patrons, notably a permanent stipend set up for him in 1809, he was able to devote himself entirely to composition and write at his own pace.”
Beethoven absorbed the music of Mozart and Haydn as well as Enlightenment ideals in thought. On a visit to Bonn, Haydn praised his music and urged the Elector to send the young man to Vienna for further study, where Beethoven arrived in November 1792. He took lessons with Haydn, although their personal relationship was complex as Beethoven had a strong will. He quickly established himself as a pianist and composer. His Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor, op. 13, commonly known as Sonata Pathétique, was composed in 1798, and the beautiful Moonlight Sonata (Mondscheinsonate in German) was completed in 1801. In his youth he was a piano virtuoso, but he had to give up performing due to his deafness and became the first musician to make a living almost exclusively through composition.
Around 1803, Beethoven began a more ambitious style which marked a new phase of his career. While his financial position and status was now secure, it was apparently a psychological crisis created by his accelerating loss of hearing which triggered this. Ironically, this made him more productive by removing distractions from his primary role as a composer. Nevertheless, it is difficult for ordinary people to understand how a person can compose timeless music entirely in his head, without hearing anything. His Eroica (Symphony No. 3) from 1804 was longer than any previous symphony. Other major works over the next decade followed in the footsteps of the Third Symphony.
Beethoven observed the French Revolution from a distance. At first he was an admirer of Napoleon, but he later became disillusioned with him. By 1814 he was at the height of his popularity, and his music was played regularly across Europe. He had changed people’s expectations for what instrumental music could do, but his deafness became worse, until about 1818 he could hardly hear at all. Ill health combined with economic problems after the Napoleonic Wars and suspicion of his Republican ideals made him a slightly more isolated figure during his final years, though still popular. His music changed and became more challenging. His Ninth Symphony was first performed in 1824, and the distinguished audience gave it a thundering applause. Sadly, Beethoven himself did not hear this, so one of the solo singers pulled his sleeve and pointed to the audience, and he turned and bowed.
Beethoven had thought as early as 1792 of setting music to the poem An die Freude (“Ode to Joy”), a hymn by the German poet, historian and dramatist Friedrich Schiller (1759-1805) championing the brotherhood of humanity, but it took more than thirty years before he used it in the final movement of his Ninth Symphony. Consistent with his ethical ideals and religious faith, he selected stanzas that emphasized universal fellowship through joy, and its basis in the love of an eternal Heavenly Father. He often celebrated heroism in his music. Many of his compositions were immediately popular and have remained so ever since:
“Beethoven’s music was esteemed particularly for its assertion of the self. Beethoven could afford the time to compose as he pleased, without answering to an employer. Perhaps as a result, on occasion he put his own experiences and feelings at the heart of a work, going beyond the long-standing traditions of representing the emotions of a poetic text, dramatizing those of an operatic character, or suggesting a generalized mood through conventional devices. Such self-expression was in tune with the growing Romantic movement…and it came to be expected of composers after Beethoven. Modern musicians and listeners who assume that composers before Beethoven also wrote when they felt inspired and sought to capture their own emotions in music are astonished to discover that earlier composers mostly created music to meet an immediate need, to please their employer, or to gratify their audience. Beethoven, and especially the critical reaction to Beethoven, changed everyone’s idea of what a composer is and does. The image he fostered of a composer as an artist pursuing self-expression who composes only when inspired continues to hold sway.”
Beethoven’s body of work is not at large as Mozart’s, although Beethoven died at fifty-six while Mozart died at the young age of thirty-five when he was still getting better and maturing as a composer. What great masterpieces the world would have known had he lived for another generation we do not know. There are other differences between these two giants in the history of music, too. Mozart was buried in a common grave, as was the custom at the time, while thousands of citizens lined the streets of Vienna at Beethoven's funeral in March 1827. All later composers have had to face Beethoven’s tremendous influence. As Peter Watson states in his book Ideas: A History of Thought and Invention, from Fire to Freud:
“All music leads up to Beethoven, says Mumford Jones, and all music leads away from him. Beethoven, Schubert and Weber comprised a smaller grouping, of what we might call pre-romantic composers, who between them changed the face of musical thought, and musical performance. The great difference between Beethoven (1770-1827) and Mozart, who was only fourteen years older, was that Beethoven thought of himself as an artist. There is no mention of that word in Mozart’s letters – he considered himself a skilled craftsman who, as Haydn and Bach had done before him, supplied a commodity. But Beethoven saw himself as part of a special breed, a creator, and that put him on a par with royalty and other elevated souls….Goethe was just one who responded to the force of his personality, writing, ‘Never have I met an artist of such spiritual concentration and intensity, such vitality and great-heartedness. I can well understand how hard he must find it to adapt to the world and its ways.’ Even the crossings-out in his autograph music have a violence that Mozart, for example, lacked. Like Wagner after him, Beethoven felt that the world owed him a living, because he was a genius.”
Beethoven’s contemporary, the poet, novelist, playwright and scholar Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832), was the greatest literary figure of German Romanticism, but unlike Beethoven he was hostile to the French Revolution from the very beginning. He was born in Frankfurt am Main, then a city-state within the Holy Roman Empire. Much of his life he lived in Weimar, where he also died. He helped establish this city as an important intellectual center, and along with Friedrich Schiller he was one of the leading figures of Weimar Classicism. His father was the son of an innkeeper. Goethe was educated with his sister at home by tutors until he was 16. In 1765 he left to study law in Leipzig, where he indirectly became one of the disciples of the pioneering art historian Johann Winckelmann. At Strasbourg in 1770-71 he met the intellectual Johann Gottfried Herder, who taught Goethe to look at literature and art as the expression of a specific national genius and culture.
In the 1780s he went to Italy, as his father had done before him, climbed Vesuvius and visited Pompeii and Herculaneum. In Sicily he climbed one of the peaks of Mount Etna, where the ancient Greek philosopher Empedocles according to legend is said to have ended his life. Goethe was fascinated by the work of the Flemish painter Jan van Eyck. He followed public events, such as the establishment of the first railways in Britain, and read the early works of authors Victor Hugo and Honoré de Balzac in France. His correspondence was enormous and included prominent figures such as Arthur Schopenhauer and Felix Mendelssohn. Goethe was a contemporary of the influential Prussian brothers Wilhelm and Alexander von Humboldt and was on friendly terms with the post-Kantian idealist philosophers Johann Gottlieb Fichte and Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel. In addition to being a brilliant writer he did studies of geology and botany and created a theory of color perception. As scholar Nicholas Boyle writes in the Encyclopædia Britannica entry for Johann Wolfgang von Goethe:
“In making this change to what one might call a more subjective science, Goethe was greatly helped by his study of the philosophy of Immanuel Kant, which was completely transforming the German intellectual landscape and was in particular being vigorously furthered in the University of Jena. The openness to Kant in turn made it easier for Goethe to respond positively when in 1794 one of Kant’s most prominent disciples, the poet and dramatist Friedrich Schiller, who was then living in Jena, suggested that he and Goethe should collaborate on a new journal, Die Horen (The Horae), intended to give literature a voice in an age increasingly dominated by politics. The friendship with Schiller began a new period in Goethe’s life, in some ways one of the happiest and, from a literary point of view, one of the most productive.” Indeed, Schiller’s collaboration with Goethe “was closer, longer, and on a higher level than any comparable friendship in world literature. The poets began a correspondence, which ran to over a thousand letters, and for over 10 years they discussed each other’s works and projects, as well as those of their contemporaries, in conversation and writing. Both profited incalculably from the relationship.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe showed great interest in the literatures of Britain, France, Italy, ancient Greece, Persia and India. His magnum opus is the two-part drama Faust, which accompanied him throughout his long and productive adult life. The first part of Faust was published in 1808, while part two was completed in 1831 and published in 1832 when he was in his eighties. Goethe did not invent the myth of Faust, but he brought it to an unprecedented level of psychological complexity. His influence spread across Europe, and his poetry was set to music by almost every significant Austrian and German composer after him.
The great Austrian composer Franz Schubert (1797-1828) came from a musical family and was extremely prolific for his short life. He died at thirty-one, weakened from syphilis and possibly from its treatment with mercury. He had great respect for his contemporary Ludwig van Beethoven and wrote over 600 songs, or Lieder, many of which were first performed for friends in home concerts. He set music to poetry by many writers, including fifty-nine poems by Goethe. His other works include several symphonies, among them Symphony in C Major (The Great; 1828) and his famous Symphony in B Minor (the so-called Unfinished Symphony), masses and piano works. Portions of the German translation of The Lady of the Lake by the Scottish poet Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832), who was popular throughout Europe, were set to music by him. Franz Schubert is often called a bridge between the Classical and the Romantic periods of European music, along with the German composer, conductor and pianist Carl Maria von Weber (1786-1826) and perhaps Beethoven himself, but Schubert arguably had more in common with Haydn and Mozart before him than with Schumann, Chopin or Wagner after him.
The eighteenth-century concert orchestra was much smaller than today’s. Haydn’s orchestra from 1760 to 1785 rarely had more than twenty-five players, but his successors gradually increased this number significantly. As orchestras grew in size, there emerged the need for someone to take control. After Beethoven around 1820, the conductor as we know him today emerged. There were also major and rapid changes in the instruments themselves at this time.
The clarinet, a single-reed wind instrument, was introduced around 1710 and by the 1780s took its place alongside the oboe, bassoon and flute as the standard woodwind instruments. The pianoforte (Italian for “soft-loud”) or piano was invented by the Italian maker of musical instruments Bartolomeo Cristofori (1655-1732) in Florence in the early 1700s, a rare case where such an important invention can be attributed almost entirely to a single individual. At first the new instrument met with slow acceptance, but from the 1760s on, makers in Austria, Germany, France and Britain produced pianos in increasing quantity. It was for these new, square Viennese-style pianos that Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart in Vienna composed his concertos and sonatas. Eighteenth-century pianos are often called fortepianos to distinguish them from the larger, louder forms of pianos developed during the nineteenth century.
The scientific and technological advances during this extremely dynamic period of European history brought new advances in metallurgy, high-quality steel and precision casting that radically changed the way goods were manufactured, including musical instruments. Mechanical innovations brought about by the Industrial Revolution, such as interlocking rods, gears and screws, were applied to improve existing instruments. In the early 1800s, brass instrument makers applied the valve technology of the steam engine to the design of trumpets and horns. The new metal technology greatly improved the otherwise unreliable wind instruments of the eighteenth century. Keys and valves were devised which enabled horns and bassoons, for example, to play more consistently in tune. New brass instruments were invented as well, including the tuba, which became the bass of the orchestral brass section.
Theobald Böhm (1794-1881), a German goldsmith and musician from Munich with experience in the steel industry, perfected a type of flute that became the basis for the modern instrument in the mid-nineteenth century. The musician Adolphe Sax (1814-1894) from Belgium created a new wind instrument now called the saxophone, familiar to a modern audience from jazz and marching bands. By the late nineteenth century the harp and the wind, brass and percussion instruments of the orchestra had almost reached their present form.
New railways were connecting people, first in Britain and then throughout the Western world and beyond. Music was no longer simply a court experience but was now enjoyed by the newly-emerging bourgeoisie. Dance music, the waltz in particular, becoming a craze at the time of the Congress of Vienna in 1814-1815. In the 1820s at the time of the Carnival, Vienna offered as many as 1,600 balls in a single night. Middle-class music-making had arrived.
One of the most important changes was in the sheer quantity of instruments that could be produced. In the 1770s the output of the largest piano manufacturers in Europe was about twenty pianos a year, because every piece needed to be made by hand. By 1800, Broadwood in London was manufacturing about four hundred pianos a year by employing a large and specialized work force, and by 1850 the firm was using steam power and mass production techniques to make over two thousand pianos a year. Because they were now produced in such large quantities, pianos became inexpensive enough for many middle-class families to afford one. The design of the piano was improved through a series of innovations.
According to Peter Watson, “Two elements were involved here. One was the evolution of the steel frame, steel being developed as a result of the industrial revolution, which enabled pianos to become much more massive and sturdy than they had been in, say, Mozart’s day. The other factor was the genius (and marketing) of Niccolò Paganini (1782-1840), who debuted at nineteen and may just have been the greatest violinist who ever existed. A superb technician and a flamboyant showman, who liked to deliberately break a string during a performance, and complete the evening using only three strings, he was the first of the supervirtuosi. But he did expand the technique of the violin, introducing new bowings, fingerings and harmonics, in the process stimulating pianists to try to emulate him on their new, more versatile instruments. The man who most emulated Paganini, on the piano at any rate, was Franz Liszt, the first pianist in history to give a concert on his own. It was partly thanks to these virtuosi that so many concert halls were built all over Europe (and, in a small way, in North America), to cope with the demand from the newly-enriched bourgeoisie, who were eager to hear these performers.”
@ KO & pale rider
Submitted by Atlanticist911 on Sun, 2009-08-30 21:41.
My sincere apologies to you both.
Submitted by KO on Sun, 2009-08-30 21:59.
No apology necessary of course, and naturally we support the rule of law, but I didn't know radio stations had licenses limiting the scope of their broadcasting.
@ Atlanticist911 and KO
Submitted by pale_rider (not verified) on Sun, 2009-08-30 13:05.
You made my day! Thanks a lot for the links.
Submitted by Atlanticist911 on Sun, 2009-08-30 00:06.
Yes, I thought, I want to listen to KUSC and now I'm able to do so, thanks to you.
PS: Here's our UK equivalent: http://www.classicfm.co.uk/on-air/ways-of-listening/
Submitted by KO on Sun, 2009-08-30 16:03.
Imagine my surprise when I tried to listen to your recommended UK classical station and encountered this message:
"It looks like you're trying to listen to our radio station from outside the UK. Unfortunately, due to music-licensing laws, we aren't permitted to allow non-UK users to listen to our stations online. However, if we've got this wrong and you are listening from within the UK, simply enter your postcode below and we'll get you started."
I'm sorry if KUSC follows the same policy. Thanks and cheers all the same!
Submitted by pale_rider (not verified) on Sun, 2009-08-30 23:44.
I tried several postal codes, including SW1A 2AA, but none of them worked. KUSC works fine though. Those bloody crippling nanny state laws in Britain. God bless America! ;)
Seriously though, no apology is necessary Atlanticist. I've encountered similar issues with American websites as well. It's probably due to copyright laws. Some videos on YouTube are not accessible in certain countries due to copyright laws either.
Submitted by KO on Sun, 2009-08-30 03:49.
Thanks, I'll check it out!
Submitted by pale_rider (not verified) on Sat, 2009-08-29 11:10.
Hi KO. Yes, I did read Mr. Bertonneau's essay on Haydn. However, I'm planning on rereading it one of these days because I did not read it very thoroughly the first time. I have to say I am a bit of a newbie still to Western Classical music, although I did receive some education in the history of Western Classical music in the past. The Brussels Journal, especially Takuan's articles, have been quite 'instrumental' in leading me to venture into the world of Classical music. And I must say, it has been a very rewarding journey so far!
Haydn et al.
Submitted by KO on Sat, 2009-08-29 21:57.
PR: If you have a good audio feed on your computer, you might enjoy tuning into the most frequently listened to classical radio station in the U.S.A., KUSC at the University of Southern California.
"Yes, I want to listen to KUSC!"
Submitted by pale_rider (not verified) on Fri, 2009-08-28 13:57.
Classicism is not my favorite period but it is nonetheless one that has produced wonderful music. Haydn is probably my favorite composer of this period, if only for his masterpiece Creation (Die Schöpfung). It's regrettable that Haydn is so often forgotten. Here are a few links to compositions by Haydn as a means of 'illustration'.
Die Schöpfung Pt. I No. 13
No. 13. "Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes"
Die Schöpfung Pt. II No. 14~15
No. 14. "Und Gott sprach: Es bringe das Waser in der Fülle hervor"
No. 15. "Auf starkem Fittige schwinget sich der Adler stolz "
Die Schöpfung Pt. III No. 34
No. 34. "Singt dem Herren alle Stimmen!"
More Joseph Haydn
"Sinfonia Concertante" in B flat major - Mvt. I, Allegro
Piano Sonata in Eb
Symphony No. 8 "Le soir" - Mvt. III
Symphony No. 94 in G Major
Symphony No. 94 in G Major - Mvt III, Allegro molto
Te Deum No. 2
Fjordman, thanks a lot for this wonderful series of articles. I wished Western Classical music were more appreciated, even among a lot of self-described Western conservatives. Something is definitely not right when East Asians are aficionados of "big-nosed" Western classical composers, while Westerners themselves are ridiculing their own precious heritage and refer to the most absurd and vulgar drivel of certain unnamed popular music genres that promote thuggery and deviant sexual behavior, as "art" and "poetry".
Keep up the good work,
Submitted by KO on Fri, 2009-08-28 23:28.
PR: Did you read Prof. Bertonneau's essay on Haydn on this website, dated 5-26-09? Highly recommended!