Haydn: String Quartets, Op. 50 (Cambridge Music Handbooks)

By W. Dean Sutcliffe

The Op. 50 string quartets include the various purest writing Haydn ever complete. during this first complete account of the six quartets, Dean Sutcliffe evaluates the Op. 50 relating to Haydn's extra often played quartets and considers their relevance to Haydn's wider output. every one quartet is mentioned intimately. The historical past to those works encompasses a short heritage of the string quartet and an overview of Haydn's past works during this style and of his function at Esterhaza. the outline of the composition and booklet of the Op. 50 quartets is predicated at the proof of Haydn's surviving letters and the lately came across autograph copies of nos. three to 6--a discovery that's vividly documented right here for the 1st time.

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At bars 126ff. the horn-call fabric from 88-92 returns - 'as we have been asserting earlier than we have been interrupted'. it's grounded via a relentless tonic pedal within the cello - a harmonic necessity after this 'bass-less' circulation - and a longer fragment from the unique subject is superimposed over it. taking a look at the circulation as an entire, a constitution of ternary with coda is very complicated, because the coda takes up approximately part the stream. Even Reginald Barrett-Ayres's beneficial time period 'split coda'16 can't conquer this hassle, because what splits it's a entire edition: the flow nonetheless has whatever to claim sooner than the closure and ultimate affirmation of the tonic. The circulation can after all be understood just a little loosely as only a set of adaptations, however the alternation of literal and sundry kinds of the subject introduces a rondo aspect into the shape. this is often additionally implied on a bigger scale: the shape will be represented as A B A C (interrupted) A C/Coda. someplace in among the 3 ideas of ternary, version, and rondo lies the structural fact of the flow. With its mix of highbrow fascination and an impossible to resist experience of temporal keep watch over, this is often the equivalent of any flow in Op. 50. No. four in F# minor just like the Eb significant quartet, the current paintings is characterised via nice tautness of building, yet to a truly diverse finish. it really is tricky to visualize works that distinction extra strongly in temper: whereas No. three turns out content material in its international of a virtually overplayed team spirit, No. four seems constricted and inhabits an international of what David Wyn Jones calls 'impersonal pathos'. 17 the hole Allegro spiritoso brings an unsettled caliber that may stay for the total paintings. Its use of the minor secret is annoying instead of impassioned; the ethos of the minor-key works of the so-called Sturm und Drang interval has been left at the back of. The tenderness and expansiveness that Mozart usually brings to his minor-key works are really overseas to Haydn's systems the following; Haydn responds to the minor key in an extra-concise, very unsensual demeanour. when it comes to selfexpression he turns into withdrawn and inarticulate - the conversational spirit of all of the different quartets in Op. 50 is absent. This constricted expression could be visible such a lot keenly within the first routine of the paintings. Donald Tovey has written that the 1st circulate 88 The person works indicates for the 1st time Haydn's convinced renunciation of tragic ends to sonata hobbies, and his now average organization of the minor mode with a passionate, a little blustering mood, finishing with a recapitulation (in those situations normal) within the tonic significant, in order that every thing seems good. As he acknowledged of himself, 'Anybody can see that i am a good-natured fellow. ' He then supplies the realization of this primary move the prestige of a 'happy end'. those judgments relatively forget about the experience within which the major-key finishing of the Allegro spiritoso has extra to do with the major-minor stability of the full paintings than with Haydn's wish for a 'happy end'.

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