October 16, 2020 7.30 p.m.

 

 

Joseph Haydn
String Quartet in C major Op. 76 No. 3


"Imperial Quartet"

Allegro
Poco Adagio, Cantabile - Var. I-IV
Menuetto
Finale, Presto

 

 

Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet Op. 18 No. 6

 

Allegro con brio
Adagio ma non troppo
scherzo
La Malinconia. Adagio - Allegretto quasi allegro

 

 

Ludwig van Beethoven, unfortunately far too little played this year, was a thoroughly political person. His open, also musical support of Napoleon's political ideas, nevertheless then angrily entrenched in the basement with pillows over his ears when the French troops marched into Vienna in 1805 and 1809.

Beethoven and his imperial figures, that is one thing. Beethoven and God are completely different. Generations would have preferred to stylize their classic as a self-righteous titan who defies the Most High like Prometheus in Goethe's vigorous verses.
Dr. Wilhelm Sinkovicz, THE PRESS

 

Op. 18/6 with the "Malinconia" at the beginning, an  indicative of the sad beginning of his long illness, which ultimately led to the loss of his hearing. The contrast between Adagio and Allegretto, with the Allegretto only an apparent redemption of Malinconia, prompted Beethoven research to see parallels with Beethoven's withdrawal from society.

“I can say, I spend my life miserably, for 2 years I have been avoiding all society”, and on the other hand: “O it's so nice to live life a thousand times - for a quiet - life, no, I feel it, I am not more made for it "

For old Joseph Haydn, the “imperial hymn” was the dearest thing he had ever written. He was not as proud of any other work as this quartet, allegedly he had it played to him every day in old age. The hidden profundity of the adagio, which reveals the sensitive side of the otherwise playful composer, was so contagious that the melody is still politicized to this day. The other movements, the GEFDC theme of the first movement (Gott Erhalte Franz Den Caiser) including the musical presentation of various folk music from the multi-ethnic state, or the glorification of the imperial army in an eerie battle scene in the last movement - are at least as fascinating as the famous imperial anthem . Our prerogative to open a cycle in the court orchestra with this work.

 

 

 

 

December 4, 2020, 7.30 p.m.

 

 

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Adagio and Fugue in C minor, KV 546

 

Johann Sebastian Bach
The Art of Fugue

Contrapunctus 1
Contrapunctus 2
Contrapunctus 8 a 3

Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quintet in C major, Op. 29

Allegro moderato
Adagio, Molto espressivo
Scherzo - Allegro
Presto

 

Alexander Zemtsov, viola

 

 

The genre of the “fugue quartet”, which was particularly valued by Emperor Joseph II, the combination of a fugue with a slow introduction, forms the musical center of the first part. The emperor's court composers Albrechtsberger and Salieri were specialized in this, so not only the fascination with the fugues of the Bach dynasty served as a stimulus for Mozart, but certainly also the opportunity to prove his mastery in fugue writing to the emperor. No other work by the composer is as chromatic as this work.
The template for this is provided by the collection "The Art of Fugue" by Johann Sebastian Bach, later referred to as such. Contrapunktus 8 was the direct template for Mozart's compositional work. For many musicians, the art of the fugue is one of the greatest works in music history.

Johann Graf von Fries, co-owner of the Fries & Co bank, was one of the richest men of his time due to his close commercial ties with the imperial family. Responsible for the minting and distribution of the Maria Theresa thaler, he not only passed on his wealth but also his passion for art to his son Ferdinand - who went down in art history as a great patron. He was closely connected to Beethoven, and not only Beethoven's only string quintet but also his 7th Symphony bears the honorable dedication. As a center of power and prosperity, the Hofburg also indirectly enabled the creation of unrivaled artistic feats.

 

 

 

 

April 2, 2021, 7.30 p.m.

 

Joseph Haydn


Musica instrumentale sopra ie 7 ultime parole del nostro Redentore in croce Hob XX 1b

L'Introduzione (Maestoso ed adagio)
Father, dimitte illis, non enim sciunt, quid faciunt
Amen dico tibi: hodie mecum eris in paradiso
Mulier, ecce filius tuus, et tu, ecce mater tua!
Eli, Eli, lama asabathani?
Sitio
Consummatum est!
Father! In manus tuas commendo spiritum meum
Il terremoto

 

Anna Vidyaykina
Sand painting (projection)

 

“On that particular day, the walls, windows and pillars of the church were covered with black cloth, and only a large lamp hanging in the middle illuminated the sacred darkness. At a certain hour all the doors were locked and the music began. After an appropriate prelude, the bishop climbed into the pulpit, uttered one of the seven words, and contemplated it. As soon as it was over, he went down from the pulpit and kneeled before the altar. The music filled this pause. The bishop went into the pulpit for the second, third time, and so on, and each time the orchestra joined in again after the speech had ended.
Georg August Griesinger: BIOGRAPHICAL NOTES ABOUT JOSEPH HAYDN

 

 

In our performance, however, the speech is only spoken with the instruments, the observation above is projected with subtle sand pictures by the artist Anna Vidyaykina.

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June 18, 2021, 7.30 p.m.

 

Ludwig van Beethoven


String Quartet Op. 18 No. 2

Allegro
Adagio cantabile
Scherzo
Allegro molto, presto

 

 

Fritz Kreisler


String quartet in A minor

Fantasia
Scherzo. Allegro Vivo, Con Spirito
Introduction and romance
Final. Allegro Molto Moderato

The piece, also known as the “complimenting quartet” because of its gallant style reminiscent of aristocratic dance balls, stands in contrast to Beethoven's otherwise rebellious and revolutionary early quartets with its positive attitude. “It could also be by Haydn”, say many musicologists without doubting his origins.

The Viennese violinist and composer Fritz Kreisler was very successful from an early age. A bon vivant, always joking, and yet with an incredible personality, he delighted the audience during his lifetime with both his profound interpretations of the violin literature and his own “acacia pieces”, compositions of Viennese salon music.
The staunch monarchist served in the Austrian army in World War I and fought at the front. In his diary "Four weeks in the trenches - The war story of a violinist" he describes impressively how his musical hearing was able to assess the distances to enemy positions through the differentiation of sounds and thus saved many lives. First believed dead and then found wounded, he was honorably discharged before the end of the war.
His string quartet is not Viennese salon music, but joins compositions by Richard Strauss, Alexander von Zemlinski, Erich Wolfgang Korngold etc. in the list of Viennese late romanticism. Wonderful, but unknown chamber music by the famous Viennese charmer.