Haydn in the Bergl Rooms

In the later years of her life, the Empress Maria Theresa had a summer apartment decorated for herself in the imperial summer palace, Schönbrunn. The set of four rooms—a salon, a study, a bedchamber, and a fourth room whose use is unknown—was decorated by the Bohemian artist, Johann Wenzel Bergl.

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Posted in Bergl Rooms, Excerpts from, Haydn, Haydn Mysteries, Opening scene, Prussian Counterpoint | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Haydn and the New World

Benjamin Franklin

It’s amazing how many of the most significant years of Haydn’s life dovetail with events in the lives of the founding fathers of a country as yet unborn.

In May, 1761, Haydn signed a contract with Prince Paul Anton Esterházy. He had just been hired to the post of Vice-Kapellmeister, and would remain with the Esterházy family for some thirty years.

He must have been aware of the New World, and yet those lands miles across the Atlantic Ocean would have held no more significance to a Viennese musician trying to make his mark on the world than faraway India or China.

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Haydn Tunes an Organ: Musical Differences

How would Haydn, or any eighteenth-century individual for that matter, tune an organ? It’s hard to believe, but at one point this was quite the contentious issue.

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Posted in Composers, Eighteenth Century, Haydn, Haydn Mysteries, tuning methods | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Where did Franz Go? A Note on Austrian Names

Michael Haydn

I recently received an email from a reader wanting to know why I always refer to Haydn as Joseph Haydn. His name was Franz Joseph Haydn, after all. So why do Haydn’s friends in the Haydn Mysteries address him by his middle name Joseph?

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Posted in A Minor Deception, Aria to Death, Austrian Names, Brothers, Franz Joseph, Haydn, Haydn Mysteries | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments