Various Artists, such as:
Jolanda Violante fortepiano, Jan Vogler cello, Susanne Scholz violin
John Wallace trumpet, Michael Thompson horn, Hugo Ruf lira, Anton Holzapfel organ
L’Arte dell’Arco, Virtuosi Saxoniae, Philharmonia Orchestra, Ensemble Dolce Risonanza
Ludwig Güttler, Federico Guglielmo, Florian Wieniger, Christopher Warren-Green direction
Although Haydn is deservedly recognised as one of the most important composers of the Classical period, his concertos are, on the whole, relatively neglected compared to those of Mozart and Beethoven. This comprehensive collection brings together his complete concertos, from some of his best-loved works, such as the Cello Concertos and Trumpet Concerto, to fascinating pieces that are comparative rarities, such as the Lira Concertos and the Flötenuhr Suites that Haydn wrote for musical clocks. All the works collected here are uplifting and engaging, and showcase the wit and geniality that are hallmarks of Haydn’s music.
The concertos for string instruments are veritable showpieces that bring Haydn’s idiomatic command of the violin and cello to the fore. The Cello Concertos, for example, demand a high level of virtuosity of the cellist, using techniques such as double-stopping and high-register passagework to exploit the cello’s potential to the full while creating music of astonishing beauty, elegance and verve. The keyboard concertos are not as challenging, but nonetheless highly enjoyable. The Horn Concertos have a driving energy that is reminiscent of the early symphonies Haydn was also composing at the time, while the ever-popular Trumpet Concerto was one of the first works to be composed for the five-keyed instrument that the virtuoso Anton Weidinger had invented and features brilliantly expressive melodic and obbligato writing that would have been impossible on earlier instruments. This set also features Haydn’s Lira Concertos performed on the instrument for which they were originally written (as opposed to the flutes, oboes and recorders on which they are often heard today): an intriguing development of the hurdy-gurdy with sympathetic strings and organ pipes.
- The only set available in the market: the complete concertos for diverse instruments by Joseph Haydn, on 7 CD’s.
- Haydn’s early concertos still breath the atmosphere of the Divertimento: entertaining, sparkling and moderately small scale. His later concertos however are mature works featuring a demanding solo part against a symphonic background; this is Haydn the Symphonist, creator of 104 symphonies, the golden classical standard.
- Performances in true Haydn spirit, full of wit and instrumental virtuosity, by period instrument groups L’Arte dell’Arco, with violinist Federico Guglielmo and Jolande Violante playing the fortepiano. Other excellent soloists are cellist Jan Vogler and trumpetist John Wallace.
- Also included are the seldom heard Lira Concertos, a now obsolete instrument, related to the organ.
- Booklet includes liner notes on the concertos.