Music Composers

Josef Haydn-Part 13

Upon Haydn's return to Vienna the young Beethoven arranged to have lessons from him. It is generally known that these lessons were practically a failure, for Haydn after his great London success had grown above giving lessons even to a promising genius. In Vienna he was the idol of society and his whole time was occupied by engagements of many kinds and it cannot be denied that he neglected his pupil.

His second visit to London was still more successful. Haydn remarked in his diary: "It is only in England that one can earn 4,000 Gulden in one evening." He was often invited to Carlton House by the Prince of Wales, who was himself a distinguished amateur; only he sometimes forgot to pay the soloists. Haydn, after waiting several months, at last sent from Vienna a bill for 100 guineas for twenty-six attendances at Carlton House, a very moderate demand which was discharged at once.

One of Haydn's most original souvenirs followed him to Vienna from a Leicester manufacturer who sent him a complimentary letter accompanied by six pairs of stockings into which were woven airs from Haydn's compositions. Another curious gift was that of a talking parrot which was sold for 1,400 florins after Haydn's death.

Two Famous Oratorios

It is peculiar that the Creation and the Seasons, the two most important works of Haydn, were children of old age. The first of the two met with some hostility from his contemporaries. Schiller called it "a meaningless hodge-podge" and Beethoven made merry over its imitation of beasts and birds. The best parts of it however not those imitating natural sounds, but those which suggest the glorious phenomena of the creation, the sun, the moon, the ocean, etc.

The Etude Magazine September 1920





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