Haydn’s Morning, Mid-Day, and Evening symphonies, now called the “Day Trilogy,” were the first he wrote after taking the appointment as Deputy Kapellmeister (Music Master) at the Court of Prince Nikolaus I. Esterhazy, “The Magnificent,” in 1761. Haydn meant to both establish himself and take over from the Kapellmeister by showing skills that his older colleague could only dream of.
The innovative symphonies in the trilogy are in a hybrid form, with solos for all the principal players in the orchestra (music buffs may say they sound as much like a concerto grosso as a symphony). Haydn was wooing the musicians in the court orchestra, who received additional pay for playing solos! The highly sophisticated music was a delightful shock to the court. Sure enough, he was soon in charge of all music for the Prince.
The depiction of a sunrise at the opening of Symphony No. 6 is deeply symbolic of a new beginning for Haydn, and the beginning of a new era of music. The Classical era of musical composition began with these symphonies, succeeding the Baroque era of Bach and Handel, and realized brilliantly by such pupils of Haydn as Mozart and Beethoven.
Click here to see a biography of the composer and detailed program notes.
Recorded live January 27, 2018 at the Central United Methodist Church in Phoenix, Arizona