1767: Haydn: Symphony No. 35 in Bb major (VIRTUOSO HORNS), age 35 GA

What a miracle this group is! I thought about buying their studio recordings, but this live recording is even better, and free. It’s always a bonus to see players performing and watching the conductor make it all happen. Perhaps start with Allegro, but the movements are all great!

Giovanni Antonini/Il Giardino Armonico

  1. Allegro – 0:14
  2. Andante in E♭ major – 7:26
  3. Menuet – Trio – 13:21
  4. Presto -16: 09


  • two oboes
  • bassoon
  • two horns
  • strings
  • continuo

1st movement:

The horns are spectacular, and listening to these players you have no idea how difficult these parts are!

2nd movement:

The winds get a rest. This is only strings, a typical slow movement otherwise.

3rd movement:

It’s a minuet. Again the horns are insanely high.

One of the interesting about minuets is that no one agrees how fast they should be. This one if rather fast and very energetic. In addition, in the trio (middle section) each beat is divided into three, so that you have nine fast notes in each measure, which makes it sound even faster.

4th movement:

This is really fast. It’s marked “presto”, which means very fast, but just how fast that marking is depends on the conductor. This is one of the main features of later Haydn symphonies, a very fast last movement. His idea was to leave the audience with a big finale, full of energy and fun.


The autograph score is “carefully” dated “December 10, 1767”. It has been speculated that this symphony was written to celebrate Prince Esterházy’s return from a visit to the Palace of Versailles.

Nickname – Virtuoso horns:

The horns are extremely high, so it takes amazing players to play the parts. So for now I used this for nickname. There are only two of them, but somehow it seems like more because they are so good.

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