Tonight’s performance has been made possible by the generosity of Ben and Landra Macy.
Haydn is the undisputed champion of chamber music. His 84 string quartets alone qualify him as such. Tonight, we explore perhaps his most famous quartet, the Emperor. Haydn was a seasoned world traveler. During his visit to England in 1791, he was greatly impressed by the national pride reflected in renditions he heard of God Save the King. In 1797, Haydn decided to emulate what he had encountered in England, composing an anthem Gott erhalte Franz den Kaiser or God Save Emperor Franz.
Late in life and in ill health, Haydn sat at his keyboard playing the hymn over and over. In 1922, the hymn was adopted by Germany as its national anthem, and known around the world by the lyrics “Deutschland, Deutschland über Alles.” While associations with the melody and its various texts have changed throughout history, Haydn’s Quartet, Op. 76, No. 3 features as its second movement the music without words, and stands as a stunning example of strophic variation. While the second movement draws plenty of attention, the quartet as a whole shows Haydn to be a master of form, expression and humor.
Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)
String Quartet Op. 76, No. 3 “Emperor”
II. Poco adagio; cantabile
III. Menuetto. Allegro
IV. Finale. Presto
Doors open at 5:00pm
NOTE: This performance is scheduled to be outdoors. In the event of inclement weather, the performance will move indoors to the barrel room. Barrel rooms tend to be quite cool. Please check the weather before coming, and bring a light sweater if it looks like the elements are not cooperating.