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Symphonies of Eszterháza Part XXI.

Symfonies of Eszterháza Part XXI
12 years – 20 weekends – 92 symphonies. György Vashegyi and the Orfeo Orchestra performed between 1998 and 2009 an important Haydn-cycle in Fertőd-Eszterháza. They played for the first time since Haydn’s lifetime all his symphonies written before London, at their birthplace, on period instruments, employing an unusually small ensemble Haydn used for his symphonies. In the same period, all the masses and the German oratories
of Haydn were also performed in concert, in collaboration with the Purcell Choir. This monumental series continues now within the walls of the castle. The Orfeo Orchestra, having achieved notable international successes, including the “Diamant de l’Opéra” of the French Opéra Magazine, “Diapason D’Or” and the “Preis der deutchen Schallplattenkritik”, often worked with famous conductors, as Helmuth Rilling, René Jacobs, Philippe Herreweghe, Masaaki Suzuki or Ádám Fischer. This time, the orchestra will be conducted by its founder, the Ferenc Liszt Award winning György Vashegyi. His intense Haydn interpretation can be best summarised through the words of some European reviewers: „his sublime, flexible and dramatic gesture reflects immediately […] his sense for tones and proportioning; […] The consistence and the balance of his conducting prove of incontestable competence […] he is able to shape each part well-articulated, diverse and contrasting, as well as to find their character and their emotional challenges […] his conducting is dynamic, diverse, colourful, rationally energic, still able to be affectionate.” In April 1788 the following enthusiastic review appeared in the Mercure de France of Paris: “…symphonies by M. Haydn were performed at practically all
the concerts. Each day one is more aware of, and consequently one admires more, the work of this great genius, who in each of his pieces, knows so well how to draw such rich and varied developments from a single subject … The symphonies of M. Haydn [are] always sure in their effect…”

Condemned to success
August 2, 2019, Friday, 7 p.m.
Apollo Hall
Not only opera flourished in Eszterháza, but – due to itinerant companies – there was lively theatrics, too. According to contemporary reports an obligato was often added, probably written by Haydn. Although the sheets were not preserved, the music survived in symphonies evoking incidental music. Just like the No. 12 in E major, the No. 22 “The Philosopher” or the No. 49 “La passione”, the No. 34 is also an example for that. 1784 was perhaps the most successful period in Mozart’s life. He gave many concerts in the Viennese palace of Count John Esterházy, as well, where he made a hit by performing his concerto in E flat major, dedicated to his
talented pupil, Barbara Ployer. The brilliant Symphony No. 75, written in 1781, was performed during Haydn’s first journey to London. According to a morbid story recorded by the master, a clergyman “sank into the deepest
melancholy on hearing my Andante, because the night before he had dreamt that such an Andante was a premonition of his death”. In fact, he died a month later.
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 34 in D minor
W. A. Mozart: Concerto for Fortepiano in E flat major KV 449
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 75 in D major

MIHÁLY BERECZ – fortepiano
ORFEO ORCHESTRA (on period instruments)
LÁSZLÓ PAULIK – concertmaster

Laying the foundation stone
August 3, 2019, Saturday, 7 p.m.
Apollo Hall
The renewal through experiments is one of the essential characteristics of Haydn’s oeuvre. The first piece, interwoven with Gregorian passion songs, was composed for a performance in the Holy Week, in the late 1760s and it is the forerunner of the first great change in style, the impressive “Sturm und Drang” symphonies, written in minor keys. In 1784, the musical public of Vienna discussed the piano concerts of Mozart who performed in less than six weeks almost two dozen concerts. No wonder, if the amateur pianists were aware of a masterpiece that was still more easy to perform than the concertos of Mozart. Such a Liebhaber-Concert is the one for fortepiano in D major by Haydn, advertised by his publisher as “the only one having been printed”. The Symphony in D major is one of Haydn’s orks that can be well dated, since it was first performed after the fire,
when the foundation stone of the “new and larger opera” was laid. Its musical forms already prepare the symphonies of London.
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 26 in D minor “Lamentatione”
J. Haydn: Concerto for Fortepiano in D major Hob. XVIII:11
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 70 in D major
MIHÁLY BERECZ – fortepiano
ORFEO ORCHESTRA (on period instruments)
LÁSZLÓ PAULIK – concertmaster

Let’s have a nice day!
August 4, 2019, Sunday, 7 p.m.
Apollo Hall
Haydn and 1761 – the right man at the right place in the right time. Such a lucky constellation is rare in the music history. The 1st May 1761 was not only for Haydn, but also for music history of importance: he entered that day the service of the musical Esterházy dukes. Experimenting, learning, composing – he knows the past of the music, the world of the concerti grossi, the school of Mannheim, especially the art of Stamitz, but he
already looks for new ways. Excellent musicians played in the orchestra of Eisenstadt, as for instance the famous violinist Tomasini or the violoncellist Weigl, therefore, Haydn inserted for choice concerto-like movements into his symphonies. The present works are also notable for their virtuous parts for violin, violoncello, flute, bassoon, or even oboe. The usual explanation for them is that Haydn, having been arrived to the Esterházy court shortly before, wanted to propitiate the musicians. However, these three pieces can also be interpreted as Haydn’s cloaked audition.
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 6 in D major “Le Matin”
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 7. in C major “Le Midi”
J. Haydn: Symphony No. 8. in G major “Le Soir”
ORFEO ORCHESTRA (on period instruments)
LÁSZLÓ PAULIK – concertmaster

Tickets are available at or at the reception of the Esterházy Castle in Fertod.


1. júna - 30. septembra 2019
Pondelok - nedeľa: 9.00-18.00
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