The Classical Era

mid-eighteenth to mid-nineteenth century

(Classical Music Map)


I. History of Classical Music  (by John Stanley)
The great composers and their masterworks in MP3 format
Albeniz Borodin Donizetti Hindemith Prokofiev Schutz
Albinoni Brahms Dowland Janacek Puccini Scriabin
Allegri Britten Dvorak Kodaly Purcell Sibelius
Arne Bruckner Falla Leoncavallo Rachmaninov Smetana
Auber Busoni Field Liszt Rameau Strauss J.S.
Bach Byrd Gabrieli Lully Ravel Strauss R.
Barber Carissimi Gershwin Mahler Respighi Stravinsky
Bartok Charpentier Gesualdo Mendelssohn Rimsky-Korsakov Tallis
Beethoven Cherubini Glinka Meyerbeer Rossini Tchaikovsky
Bellini Chopin Gluck Monteverdi Saint-Saens Telemann
Bernstein Clementi Gounod Mozart Scarlatti Verdi
Berwald Corelli Grieg Mussorgsky Schoenberg Victoria
Berlioz Couperin Handel Pachelbel Shostakovich Villa-Lobos
Bizet Debussy Haydn Paganini Schubert Vivaldi
Boccherini Delibes Hildegard Palestrina Schumann Wagner
Orff  "Carmina Burana"
II. History of Jazz

Franz Joseph Haydn

(1732 - 1809)

Pierre-Paul Prud’hon


Haydn was born in March 1732 into a Europe still dominated by powerful dynasties — the Hanovers in England, Bourbons in France, and Hapsburgs in Austria. The family lived on the borders between Austria and Hungary. Influenced from an early age by his father's love of folk music, Haydn was spotted by the choirmaster of Vienna's St Stephen's Cathedral at the age of eight. He was taken to Vienna and sang in the choir until his voice broke.

With borrowed money, Haydn bought a second-hand clavier; he then started to teach as well as to refine his playing and composition techniques. Along the way, he also met useful contacts, such as the fashionable poet Pietro Metastasio and the singing teacher Nicola Porpora, who taught Haydn composition.

In 1759 an aristocratic patron, Count Morzin, employed Haydn to supervise his private orchestra and Haydn wrote his first symphony. This attracted the attention of Prince Paul Esterhazy, who in 1761 appointed him vice-Kapellmeister. Haydn moved to the Eisenstadt court of this powerful and wealthy Hungarian family. The Prince, who himself played the violin and cello, wanted to enhance the court's image by encouraging orchestral and operatic music; this duly became the vice-Kapellmeister's duties.

The Prince died within a year and was replaced by his brother, who had even more expansive ideas, calling for a continuous stream of compositions, both operatic and instrumental, from Haydn. This Prince, Nikolaus the Magnificent, played the baryton (a six-stringed, bowed instrument). Haydn discreetly mastered it himself and over the years composed over 150 pieces for the Prince to play.

In 1764 Prince Nikolaus visited the Palace of Versailles, an experience that prompted him to build the glorious Esterhaza palace. With its 126 guest rooms and expansive gardens, built on what had been an inhospitable area of marshland by Lake Neusiedler, the palace became Haydn's home. The Esterhazys' increased status required yet more music — 14 stage works in as many years, quite apart from daily needs and special occasions. In 1768 the Prince built a 400-seat theatre in which he expected some kind of performance even day.
(Five years later he added a separate puppet theatre which also performed Haydn's operas. By then Haydn was in sole charge, the Kapellmeister having died in 1766, and in one year alone there were 125 performances of 17 operas.)
Those in service could not escape the sense of isolation on the stretch of damp
marshland, estranged from their families. From 1766 to 1772 Haydn responded to this environment with a series of dark compositions, provoked also by the stirrings of the German literary movement later called Sturm und Drang (Storm and Stress). The intense string quartets that form Haydn's Opus 20 were composed at this time: with these pieces Haydn's reputation as founder of the classical string quartet was established. His next pieces m this form (Opus 33) so impressed Mozart that the younger composer dedicated six of his own quartets to Haydn.

Haydn was invited in 1784 to compose six symphonies by the Parisian Masonic Lodge. These became known as the Paris symphonies (Nos. 82—87) and were later followed by three more (Nos. 90-92). His fame spread to Spain and he was invited by Cadiz Cathedral to write for Good Friday the seven haunting movements of the oratorio Seven last words of our Saviour on the cross — for which he was apparently paid with a large chocolate cake stuffed with gold coins. He returned to this piece later, arranging it for string quartet and as a cantata with soloists.

In 1790 Prince Nikolaus died at the age of 77. In the wake of the French Revolution his son Anton curbed main' of the court's excesses and dismissed the orchestra but offered a substantial pension to Haydn in recognition of his long and distinguished service. Haydn went to London in January 1791. where he was immediately treated as a celebrity. Oxford University conferred an honorary degree on him. and Haydn repaid the compliment by composing Ins Oxford symphony (No. 92). During the two seasons of 1791—2 and 1794—5 he composed the 12 symphonies now known as the London symphonies. Various of these bear nicknames intended to attract audiences: The surprise (No. 94) includes a sudden loud chord at the start of the slow movement, and The dock (No. 101) has a "tick-cock" running throughout the slow movement.

After his acclaimed second season, various attempts were made to persuade him to remain in England. But after Prince Anton Esterhazy's death, the new Prince, Nikolaus II, wanted Haydn as his Kapellmeister. At the age of 59 Haydn returned to Eisenstadt and began shaping the musical life of the new court. In 1796 he wrote a Trumpet concerto for his friend Anton Weidinger, a trumpeter in the Vienna Court Orchestra. Three years previously, Weidinger had invented a type of trumpet with keys, and Haydn's concerto explored the possibilities of the new instrument.

The new Prince, however, was not fond of instrumental music, so Haydn began to write a series of Masses. These incorporated all his knowledge of opera and symphonies. Each had a theme and a name: the Missa in tempore belli (Mass in time of war, 1796); Heiligmesse (Holy Mass, 1796); Missa in angustiis (Nelson Mass. 1798); Theresienmesse (Theresia Mass. 1799); Schopfungsmesse (Creation Mass, 1801); and Hannoniemesse (Wind-band Mass, 1802).

Haydn's great oratorio The Creation was performed in 1798. Like the Masses. The Creation was an outlet for Haydn's devout religious feelings. Starting with a slow, mysterious depiction of chaos, the work falls into three parts — Creation of the earth; Creation of the living creatures; Creation of Adam and Eve - and is a loving portrait of nature, using music to mimic the flight of birds and the motion of the sea; even employing a contrabassoon -a rare instrument at the time — to represent the equally rare hippopotamus. The (Creation was followed by The Seasons, a secular oratorio based on a poem by James Thomson, first performed in Vienna's Schwarzenberg Palace in 1801.

Haydn was released from the Esterhazy family in 1804 after 40 years' service. He attended a gala performance of The Creation to honour his seventy-sixth birthday and was so moved by his reception that he had to be taken home before the end. Never again would he make a public appearance. As Napoleon's invading troops bombarded Vienna, the 77-year-old Haydn lay dying in his home on the outskirts of the city, and as a final mark of respect Napoleon placed a guard ot honour outside his Gumpendorf house.


Franz Joseph Haydn




Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)



Daniele Giorgi direct.the Orchestra Pistoiese Promusica, Umberto Clerici - cello

Concerto for cello and orchestra in C major Hob. VIIb/1

Allegro molto

Serg van Gennip
Sonate Gdur Hob XVI G1.

Piano Sonata No. 38 in F major (1 Moderato)

Symphony Nr. 85 "La Reine", 4th movement

Columbia University Orchestra
Symphony No. 88
Adagio - Allegro
Menuetto: Allegretto
Finale: Allegro con spirito

Cello Konzert D-Dur 1.Satz

Cellokonzert D-Dur 2.Satz

Cellokonzert D- Dur 3.Satz

Cellokonzert C-Dur 1.Satz

Cellokonzert C-Dur 2.Satz

Cellokonzert C-Dur 3.Satz

Sonate Gdur Hob XVI G1.

Allison Lovejoy
Sonata No. 34 in E minor, Presto

Andrew L. Simpson
Piano Sonata in E-Flat Major, Hob. XVI:49

Natasha Paremski
Sonata in C Major

Patricia Kopatchinskaja
Piano Trio Hob.15, Nr. 25

Tel Aviv Trio 
Trio in C Major Hob. XV:21 for piano, violin and cello
Adagio pastorale - Vivace assai
Finale Prest

Lord Nelson Mass
Qui Tollis

Et incarnatus
Et resurrexit
Agnus Dei
Dona Nobis

Long Beach Forty-Niner Choir, Golden west chamber Singers, and FVHS Troubadours
Soprano: Alina Artemova. Contralto: Erica Turrell. Tenor: Brian DehBass, Brad McMurray

Missa in Tempore Belli "Paukenmesse" in C major

Gloria I
Gloria II
Gloria III
Credo I
Credo II
Credo III
Agnus Dei I
Agnus Dei

St. Matthew's Adult Choir

Piano Trio in E major, Hob. XV:28
Allegro moderato
Finale: Allegro

Die Schopfung (The Creation)
Uni Witten-Herdecke chor, Oratorium für Soli, Chor und Orchester Hob

Die Schöpfung Nr. 2-3
Die Schöpfung Nr. 5
Die Schöpfung Nr. 10-11
Die Schöpfung Nr. 14
Die Schöpfung Nr. 18-19
Die Schöpfung Nr. 26
Die Schöpfung Nr. 28
Die Schöpfung Nr. 31-3



Pierre-Paul Prud’hon
















Discuss Art

Please note: site admin does not answer any questions. This is our readers discussion only.

| privacy