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Symphony No. 2 (B. & H.), in D Major

Joseph Haydn

1. Adagio. Allegro.

2. Andante.

3. Minuet.

4. Finale. Allegro spiritoso.

The Symphony in D major -- No. 2, Breitkopf and Härtel -- was written in 1795. It has the usual Adagio introduction, in D minor, closing on the dominant pianissimo and leading into the Allegro with the following theme :

[Music excerpt]

The second theme of the first movement, in the key of A, appears only once. In the working-up of the second part, the composer utilizes the four quartet-beats followed by two half-notes, given above, as a separate motive, which imparts to the whole movement a certain brusqueness and force.

The Andante, in G major, 2/4 time is based on the following lovely song written in a popular vein --

[Music excerpt]

and treated in the form of variations; not howver, in the usual strict manner, but interspersed with significant and deeply effective intermezzos. The second part of the melody proceeds with the following tuneful counterpoint, using the opening bars of the Andante for an accompaniment:

[Music excerpt]

The Minuet, in D major, is energetic in character, owing to its peculiar accentuation, as well as strong harmony, and yet preserves the humor and piquancy of the master's most favorite movements in a wonderful degree. The Trio has the same character, in its contrast to the Minuet proper, as that in the E flat symphony.

The Finale, in D major, Allegro spiritoso, has a flavor of country life and its enjoyments. It begins on a pedal bass for horns and 'cellos, over which runs the most natural, simple song, which however gives free play to the master's art in counterpoint.

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See also:
Middle Ages Music
Renaissance Music
Baroque Era Music
Classical Era Music
Romantic Era Music
Nationalist Era Music
Turn of Century Music

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