Day 86: Christmas Day, 2013

HaydnCD86Wonderful music!

According to the Wiki article about Haydn’s String Quartets, Op. 77 Nos 1 and 2 are nicknamed the “Lobkowitz” quartets, and they were composed/performed in 1799. Haydn was 67.

According to Wikipedia, Lobkowitz refers to the House of Lobkowitz:

The Lobkowicz family (Lobkovicové in modern Czech, sg. z Lobkovic; Lobkowitz in German) dates back to the 14th century and is one of the oldest Bohemian noble families. The first Lobkowiczs were mentioned as members of the gentry of north-eastern Bohemia.

I found Op. 77 No. 1 to be vigorous, meaty, and confident. It had a German sound, to me. Like it was crafted to represent a powerful Bohemian noble family, which – if Wiki is to be believed – it was.

Movement IV (“Finale: Presto”), is particularly triumphant.

Op. 77 No. 2 in F, on the other hand is more serene, less vigorous. Some of the movements in Op. 77 No. 2 are downright slow…

But they have a kick to them. At around the 3:43 mark of Movement II (“Menuet: Presto”), the tempo slows, the instruments kind of drift off to silence…and then – BAM! Everything kicks in at a brisk pace. It’s like Haydn wanted to Continue reading