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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDH55114
Recording details: May 1993
St Giles' Cripplegate, United Kingdom
Produced by Martin Compton
Engineered by Tony Faulkner
Release date: November 1993
Total duration: 22 minutes 11 seconds

'An impressive addition to a fine series. Recommended with enthusiasm' (CDReview)

Symphony No 13 in D major
composer

Allegro molto  [4'56]
Adagio cantabile  [6'51]
Menuet  [5'54]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
In Symphony No 13 Haydn attempted to show how well the horn quartet was suited to ensemble-playing. He wrote for it in a way that was to become the standard nineteenth-century practice in which four-part writing gave horns I and III the upper voices and II and IV the lower, in interlocking fashion.

The great hall in the palace at Eisenstadt was fairly large and had an ample acoustic, something that Haydn bore in mind in his twenty or so symphonies written there between 1761 and 1765 (from 1766 the bulk of the court’s musical activities shifted to the new summer palace of Eszterháza, the intimacy of whose music room led Haydn to experiment with more chamber-music-like sonorities). This is most notable in the first movement of No 13, whose sustained, organ-like wind chords counterbalance and support the vigorous rhythmic repetitions of the unison arpeggio string theme that dominates the movement. A further subtle use of the acoustic occurs when the recapitulation arrives with a surreptitious piano, before the four unison horns proudly proclaim the arpeggio idea.

Almost something straight out of a concerto, the ‘Adagio cantabile’ is a movement for solo cello whose melody gently meanders above a repeated staccato chordal pattern on the other strings. The Minuet restores the tutti forces of the whole orchestra, but for the trio Haydn again reduces the instrumentation to strings, this time accompanying a solo flute. For the finale, Haydn combines a fugal style with sonata form. The cantus firmus subject will doubtlessly sound familiar, being the same four-note Gregorian ‘Credo’ theme that would later furnish the finale of Mozart’s last symphony, No 41 in C, K551.

from notes by Matthew Rye © 1993

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