Franz Joseph Haydn,1732-1809, surprising clarinet

One always learns about Haydn from a very young age. He is frequently remembered by the young musician as the Father of the Orchestra, or (Papa Haydn),and indeed he was.(Unless we got back to Monteverdi, who first really wrote for the orchestra as such, but that is for another article.)
But, few of us know about his original writing for the clarinet.
While there is no original concerto, certainly no sonata, or original chamber music,save for the Haydn Octets, there exists some of the most surprising clarinet writing in one of his longest works, “The Creation”. Composed over a two year period at the end of the 18th century, 1796-1798, it is one of Haydns longest works, based upon Genesis, with references to Miltons, “Paradise Lost”, the opening of the work, specifically titled, “The Representation of Chaos”contains music which sounds much more like Wagner than Haydn, with unheard of dissonances and really lovely music for both the first and the second clarinetsist of the orchestra.
Here is a performance of the “Representation of Chaos ” from “the Creation:

This recording is about 5 inutes long and the music for the clarinet occurs near the end of the movement.
Recently, I was given a gift of an original work of Hayd, entitled,
“24 Minuets”,Hob.IX:16. There is only one copy of the parts of this original music for orchestra, now in the Berlin Staatsabibliothek, but coming from Haydns publishers, and included in the 1839 thematic catalog of his works, where he listed it as XXIV Minuetten f Orchester Comp. in London 1791-1795.

That is quite enough of music history, but the fun is in the listening , featuring the clarinets in solo and soli passages, which are quite beautifully played.13 No. 13 In A Major.  Music written for our clarinet. The solo in the Minuet if most probably played on an Oehler System clarinet, different bore, fingering,harder to fill with air, but lovely sounding.

Stay well, keep practicing , and enjoy.

sherman

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