Welsh Newspapers

Search 15 million Welsh newspaper articles

Hide Articles List

8 articles on this Page




BIOGRAPHICAL MEMOIR OF HAYDN. The parentage ofths celebrated Haydn was of the lowesl description his father being in BO better a situation in life than a Common waggoner in Robraw, an Auslrian village on ^Iie frontiers of Hungary. This man had Jearnerl to play on the harp during his travels to Frankfort cn the Ma-yn, a circumstance to which may, in a great measure, he attributed the proficiency his son Joseph afterwards dis- played in his profession, as old Haydn was ac- customed on a Sunday evening to I)racticit" -those songs with which he was acquainted, ■whilst his wife accompanied him with tier -voice, and hi'S little son seating himself at the feet of his parents, and taking a piece of wood in his right hand, scraped upon tll-e, t'eft in imi- f\!ion of performing on the violin. At one of these domestic concerts, a schoolmaster of a ■neighbouring village, who was a distant rela- tion of Haydn's, observing that the boy kept ■excellent time in his movements, advised his father to bring-him up to the profession of tnnsic, a measure to which he was not adverse as he had long felt an inclination to fix him an some ecclesiastical situation, and the study ijf mimic appeared the first step towards the promotion of his object. In the distressed circumstances of Haydn's parents, it is not to be lupposed they could afford to expend much upon the education of tii-eir children, but here fortune -stood the child's friend, for the rector, who kept the academy at Haimbnrg, took linn into his music school either for a small premium, or totally free of expence. At this })lace he was instructed in the duties of his re- ligion, 'learned to read aud write j to sing and play on sevegil instruments, an advantage Haydn ever after gratefully acknowledged.- He had remained nearly two years in Haim- btirg when Peiter, the Court musician, who couducted the music at the cathedral of St. Stephen, at Vienna, came to pay a misit to the dean, with whom he was au old and intimate friend. In the course ofemiversation Heiter mentioned that a many of his-choristers had lost their vtiiees, he was in search of others to replace them, and enquired if the dean could assist him. This afforded an opportunity for .mentioning young Haydn, who, with his nsher, were immediately sent for, and after a trial of his powers and execution, he was re- gularly appointed a chorister at the cathedral of St. Stephen's. He used to relate that at his first interview with Reiter, his appearance was more that of a hedge-hog than a human being. In his new office, Haydn was properly 1 instructed in the theory of music, and so attached did he become. to that fascinating. science, that 1Ioon after he attempted to com- pose in eight and sixteen parts. I thought at that time said he., that it must be good, because the parts seemed full, and the paper black; but Reiter-reprimanded me frequently for my i presumption in undertaking what it wasiro-i possible for me at that time to execute. At the age of t 0 Haydn was discharged from ■th<; f-atliedraJ church, because his voice was brokf: he was then obliged to live in Vi-; ennii for several years in the greatest distress., lie lodged in a garret six pair of stairs high, which had neither stove nor window, and he 1tali oncn dertared that his breath froze on Jiis covering, and the water as soon as he-car- ried it up stairs, turned to a solid piece of ice. At this time he gave lessors in music, and played in-several orchestras; yet his po- verly prevented him from associating with his fr ends,and he had no other com for1 of-amusing himself than 01111 halfwortl1 eaten harpsichord. With this lie sat down to compose but liiq it, iiooii overcame every difticoity. Fortune n-ow appeared weary of tormenting him, for Lady Martini, all acqtniotaiice of Metastasio., became bis pllpil111 singing nd playing, and thus he got his hoard for ■nothing during three years. Jn 4his period he was made lecturer at a convent in Leopcdstadt, which brought him ten pounds per aniiiim.- He played also on the organ at Count Hang- '12 wize's chapel, and sung at Use cathedral of St. Stephen's. Haydn never went to Itaty; if he had he would have acquired a true taste for Italian Operas, which would have tendered hii reputation as great lor vocal, as it is all over the world for his instrumental music. Thus rose Haydn, by his own exertions, from the greatest distress; and his compositions I" the last fitly years, have immortalized hi; name. He left a moderate fortune at his t't. cease, chiefly saved from what he had acquir- ed by bili travels, and particularly by coming to England, where be acknowledged that Vu works have been best rewarded, and where he was universally respected.* He took, on his return from this country, a small house and garden at Gumpendorf, where he lived a widower, until the time of his death. In form Haydn was of middle size, and had no remark- able features. In the year 1786 he composed instrumental parts to a church service, which had been written only for voices in the year 1742, and afterwards presented it to his bene- factor, the Prince of Easterhazy, which was sfhe last of his works; He composed from his eighteenth to his seventy-third year, 113 overtures, 108 pieces for the viola di garnba, 20 divertimentos for various instruments, 8 marches, 24 trios, 6 violin solos, 15 concertos for different iiistruinetits, 30 services, 83 quar- tetts, 66 sonatas for the piana forte, 12 Ger- man, English and Italian duetts, 5 German t, puppet operas (a performance which the late Empress Maria Therco was much attached to), 5 oratories, 3615 Scotch airs, and 400 mi nuets and waltzes. He was born iu 1730, and died in May 1809, Ih 1791 he wat crested a Doctor of Music: in this University.



To the Editors of the North…

Russian Anecdotes from the…


JJfiscçllaneo zt8. :