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Haydn: Symphonies 88 & 101 - Fischer

Haydn: Symphonies 88 & 101 - Fischer

MDG Scene  901 1441-6

Stereo/Multichannel Hybrid

Classical - Orchestral


Haydn: Symphony No. 88 "The Letter V", Symphony No. 101 "The Clock", Overture "L'isola disabitata"

Haydn Philharmonie
Adam Fischer (conductor)

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Review by John Broggio - April 3, 2007

A superb follow-up to Haydn: Symphonies 92 & 94 - Adam Fischer in which most of my complaints about the sound quality have been addressed.

"The Letter V" or Symphony No.88 is one of Haydn's most sunny symphonies that has one beautiful melody after another flowing from his pen. The Osterreichisch-Ungarische Haydn Philharmonie clearly enjoy the opportunities this gives the whole orchestra to contribute (including a very tasteful cello solo in the second movement). The delicacy in the accompanying orchestra is delightful and makes the contrasting dramatic episodes all the more involving. I particularly enjoyed the drone effect in the Trio that is also used to great effect in the Emperor quartet. The finale is given a fantastically fizzy account by all concerned where the use of divided violins is telling.

As with the earlier issue, the two "named" symphonies are separated by an overture - this is more innovative writing from Haydn and the extended use of solo writing brings to mind his Sinfonia Concertante in Sturm & Drang guise. A wonderful, albeit thin slice of music in this sandwich of Haydn.

The 101st symphony ("The Clock") is also given a very fine reading under Adam Fischer's baton and one can only echo my comments about the earlier symphony. Suffice to say that the "clock" is in good working order with a reliable "mechanism"! As with the finale to "V", the horns really let go in the coda to the finale which makes for a very exciting ending - all the orchestra manage to save something for the endings and this makes the sense of conclusion all the more satisfying. The dynamic range employed here is less wide than in the earlier disc but the "Surprise" has call for a particularly wide range for maximum effect.

The sound is now clearer and so all the notes that Haydn committed to paper are audible, even with subito piano markings. The reverberation has been tamed but the warmth retained so that the listener can hear all without straining.

Congratulations to all concerned - a most enjoyable and recommendable disc of this marvellous composer.

Copyright © 2007 John Broggio and HRAudio.net

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