85. Music at Home, Pre-iPod
- Haydn: Folk Songs for voice with violin, cello, and piano
- Haydn: String Quartet in E-flat Major, Op. 64, No. 6
It’s easy to forget that chamber music is so called because it was written for performance in one’s own chamber, not the concert hall. The advent of recording and the internet has made it possible for you to listen to this live performance in your car, on the treadmill, or in your living room. In Haydn’s day, though, all music was live. Gathering a few friends to play together in your home was one of the most common ways to experience music. First we’ll hear three folk songs arranged by Haydn for a chamber ensemble of violin, cello, piano, and voice, the sort of instrumentation one could easily imagine gathering together among friends. Then, we’ll hear Haydn’s String Quartet in E-flat Major. Written later in Haydn’s career, these quartets were likely composed for one of the violinists in Haydn’s court orchestra, but they were also intended for public performance in London. Thus they draw on the genre’s history as at-home entertainment but also anticipate chamber music’s future as a concert form.