Day 14: Sunshine On My Shoulder

HaydnCD14This morning, I tried something different with Haydn’s symphonies. I didn’t actively listen to them. I listened to them as background to e-mailing, researching, thinking.

In other words, passive listening.

I wanted to see if something about these three symphonies would jump out at me if I wasn’t paying attention to them.

I also wanted to see if symphonies are best actively heard, or if one can enjoy them by keeping them in the background.

Even though I listened to CD 14 at least twice, and possibly three times, I discovered what one might expect I’d discover: Unless I pay attention, their nuances, even their broad sweep and expert craftsmanship, are lost to me.

I may as well be listening to the latest from Miley Cyrus.

Symphony No. 49 in F Minor “La Passione” was Continue reading

Day 13: Changes

HaydnCD13I decided to shake things up this morning.

Instead of dining at the Panera farther away from where I live, I chose the Panera closer to me.

And instead of a booth, today I occupy that same square table I used to race to possess every day at 6:00am when I listened to the complete works of Mozart a couple of years ago.

Ooh. Big changes afoot.

Panera3I dunno. May not seem like much to you. But if I was a cat I’d freak out at such major alterations to my schedule.

I listened to the following three symphonies (twice!) on CD 13 this morning:

Symphony No. 46 in B, which Haydn composed in 1772 during his Sturm und Drang period. He was 40 years old.

This symphony was gripping from the start. I Continue reading