Symphony No. 96 “The Miracle”
Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) is the foremost representative of Viennese classicism, along with Mozart and Beethoven (his early works). The composers who formed the style for the era were mainly resident in Vienna – hence the name “Vienna Classicism”. The pieces were often composed with a prominent melody part instead of as before with several equivalent melody parts. The works were also divided into blocks that weighed against each other with different moods. During this period, the “modern” symphony developed and the orchestra got its current look.
Haydn was the son of a poor wagon maker and due to his early discovered musical aptitude, he was taught singing and instrumental playing by a relative at the age of six. None of his parents could read notes, but his father was a self-taught folk musician. Haydn is estimated to have composed no less than 108 symphonies, 68 string quartets, 13 piano concertos, 3-7 violin concertos, about 30 piano trios, 52 piano sonatas, 13 operas, 13 cantatas and oratorios and 12 masses.
Among his most played works are the last twelve symphonies, the so-called London Symphonies, composed between 1791 and 1795. This includes this symphony, recorded for GSOplay in the autumn of 2019.