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Name of Work

Haydn, Joseph (1732-1809)
Quartet in E-flat, No. 6, Op. 64 (Hob. III.64) (2002)

Menuetto: Allegretto
Finale: Presto


Oct 30, 2002

Jasmine Lin, Violin
Joseph Genualdi, Viola
Rami Solomonow, Viola
Christopher Costanza, Cello

HAYDN-Quartet in E-flat, Op. 64, No. 6 (Hob. III:64)

Composed in 1790

The six quartets of Opus 64, which were written in 1790, are dedicated to Johann Tost. It is interesting to touch for a moment on the man to whom the quartets were dedicated and the mystery surrounding the dedication. What musicologists are not sure of is which Johann Tost, as there are two of them. One played violin in the Esterhazy orchestra, and there is another, also a violinist, whose file begins with his marriage to a young lady in 1790 and goes on to record his subsequently becoming a pillar of commerce. According to an early biographer of Haydn, Carl Ferdinand Pohl (1819-1887), they could possibly be the same man. No one knows.

String Quartet Op. 64, No. 6 is not only satisfying to the intellectual musician, but pleasing to the player, and a pleasure to the listener, who experiences new delights with each hearing. The first movement, cast in the traditional sonata-allegro pattern, is monothematic, a trait which is found in many late period works of Haydn. Contrasted with this reflective first movement is a beautiful second movement with lengthy melodic lines which give a timeless effect to the music. This portion of the quartet is organized around a ternary pattern of ABA, with the middle section providing a tremendous contrast to the tranquility of the opening and closing of the movement. An attractive minuetto follows in the traditional pattern of minuet-trio-minuet. The trio is a simple structure, ternary thematically and binary harmonically – so often the case with Haydn movements of the kind. The last movement is written in an intriguing form which can be analyzed either as a simple ternary form plus coda or a rondo pattern in which the principal theme alternates with three different versions, always modified and changed, of the main idea.

Program notes by Dr. Thomas A. Brown

Performance date: October 30, 2002 (CSQ)

Performance Audio

The audio file for this performance is unavailable at this time.