String Quartet opus 71, no 2, in D major – Joseph Haydn

by richibi


    “Old London Bridge

          J.M.W. Turner


in the spirit of juxtaposing two items of the 
same genus but growing from different 
trees, let me put together for comparison 
two versions of Haydn’s delightful Opus 71,
no 2, in D major, one by a quartet of ladies 
from “South Korea”, the other a same 
number of males from the “UK”, as 
indicated in either case on their videos

their Trondheim Chamber Music Festival
Competition was held last year, 2017,
it’s irrelevant who won on this particular
challenge, both are brilliant, so I’ll leave 
it up to you, the girls, the Esmé Quartet
the boys, the Maxwell – I think it might 
even come down to your sexual 
inclination, though both, as the host of 
the musical “Cabaret” would say, “are 
beautiful, life is beautifuleven the 
orchestra is beautiful“, indeed

the Apponyi Quartets, requested and paid 
for by Count Anton Georg Apponyi, after 
Haydn’s sponsor, Prince Nicholas Esterházy,
had died and left his son, Prince Anton, with
Haydn on his hands, whose orchestra he 
forthwith disbanded, being no aficionado of
music, Haydn was left to peddle his wares  
in London, England, where he became an 
undisputed success, not surprisingly, 
would think, after their having to handle the 
dour and, if you’ll forgive me, unimaginative, 
and uninspired Handel

the Esmé, I found, was sharp, acerbic, 
succinct in their first movement, but 
the Maxwell took over in their melting,
verily discombobulating adagio, a 
sensuality that seemed to evade the 
women’s more electric, crackling  

the girls caught up, however, in the
final “allegretto”, where they killed it

like I said, it’s a toss-up, you choose

R ! chard