About the album
Four of the less known baryton works by Joseph Haydn performed by the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam under the direction of Jan Willem de Vriend (also chief conductor of the Dutch Symphony Orchestra).
Hob.X:1, 5 and 12 come from a series of six divertimenti for baryton and a larger ensemble consisting of strings and two horns. The source of Hob.X:10 is unclear, but in In the Entwurf-Katalog the work appears in a version for baryton, viola, cello and double bass.
On May 1 in the year 1761, Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) entered into the service of the princes of Esterházy. It was an association that would last nearly 30 years and prove fruitful for Prince Nikolaus I and the composer. Haydn held an enviable position with the Esterházys. To a degree, he had a confidential relationship with Prince Nikolaus, owing in particular to the prince’s unusual hobby: Nikolaus was a passionate player of the baryton. This relative of the viola da gamba was even then uncommon.
Between 1766 and 1775, Haydn wrote more than 125 trios for baryton, viola and cello. He took care that the baryton parts were not all too complicated so that Nikolaus could handle them. Trios were endlessly performed – Haydn generally playing the viola part – sometimes without audience, for Nikolaus’ sole enjoyment, and sometimes in private house concerts.
Haydn also composed a number of pieces for baryton with a larger ensemble. In these, too, Nikolaus played the baryton, but Haydn conducting the ensemble. The roles were reversed, Haydn leading and Nikolaus following.
The pieces that Haydn researcher Anthony Hoboken listed under category X in his catalogue of the composer’s complete works form a part of this music for baryton in ensemble setting. Nos. 1, 5 and 12 come from a series of six divertimenti for baryton and a larger ensemble consisting of strings and two horns. These pieces have almost symphonic traits in their structure and execution, not least because of the highly virtuoso horn parts, proof again that Haydn had excellent musicians at his disposal in the court orchestra. The divertimenti quickly became very popular outside the court, too. In 1781, the Viennese publisher Artaria issued them as Six Divertissements op. 31, with the flute replacing the baryton. Shortly later they were issued as Six symphonies in London. Hob.X:12 is known only from the Artaria edition – in its original form, no autograph or manuscript is known to exist. It is not entirely certain, but nonetheless highly likely that this work was originally composed with the baryton as soloist. In any case, the baryton part can readily be reconstructed from the Artaria edition’s flute part.
The source of Hob.X:10 is unclear. In the Entwurf-Katalog, in which Haydn long kept an account of his compositions, the work appears in a version for winds and another version for baryton, viola, cello and double bass. Here too, the technically demanding horn parts stand out. Also noteworthy is that aside from the baryton, all of the instruments are to be played with mutes.
Vier vrij onbekende werken van Hadyn voor een bijzonder solo-instrument
Op 1 mei 1761 trad Haydn in dienst van de prinsen van Esterházy. Het dienstverband zou bijna 30 jaar duren en was lonend voor zowel Hadyn als Prins Nikolaus I.
Nikolaus speelde de baryton, een ongewoon instrument dat verwant was aan de viola da gamba. Tussen 1766 en 1775 componeerde Haydn meer dan 125 trio’s voor baryton, altviool en cello. Hij zorgde ervoor dat de barytonpartijen niet al te moeilijk waren, zodat Nikolaus ze zonder problemen kon spelen. Tijdens de vele uitvoeringen van de trio’s speelde Haydn vaak de altvioolpartij. Daarnaast componeerde hij een aantal werken voor baryton met een groter ensemble. In deze werken speelde Nikolaus nog steeds de baryton, maar Haydn was nu dirigent. De rollen waren omgedraaid: Hadyn leidde en Nikolaus volgde.
Dit album, uitgebracht in het Haydn-jaar, bevat vier van de minder bekende werken voor baryton. Dit instrument wordt zelden gebruikt en is lastig om op te spelen. De barytonpartij wordt gespeeld door Freek Borstlap. De werken worden uitgevoerd door het Combattimento Consort onder leiding van Jan Willem de Vriend. De Vriend had het ensemble in 1982 opgericht maar is tegenwoordig actief is als chef-dirigent van het Nederlands Symfonieorkest en als gastdirigent bij orkesten in binnen- en buitenland.
Hob.X:1, 5 en 12 komen uit een serie van zes divertimenti voor baryton en een ensemble bestaande uit twee hoorns en strijkers. Het is niet duidelijk waar Hob.X: 10 vandaan komt, maar het werk verschijnt in de Entwurf-Katalog in een versie voor baryton, altviool, cello en contrabas.
Die Kompositionen, die der Haydn-Forscher Anthony Hoboken in seinem Katalog unter den vollständigen Werken von Haydn in der Kategorie Nr. X eingeordnet hat, gehören zu eine Sammlung von Musik für Baryton mit Ensemble. Nr. 1, Nr. 5 und Nr. 12 sind Teil einer Reihe von 6 Divertimenti für Baryton und ein Ensemble von Streichern und 2 Hyrnern. Es sind Werke, die in ihrem Aufbau und ihrer Ausarbeitung fast symphonisch anmuten. Die Divertimenti genossen schon bald auch außerhalb des Hofes große Popularität. In den letzten 25 Jahren hat sich das Combattimento Consort national und international einen Namen gemacht. Sowohl die hohe Qualität der Aufführungen des Ensembles als auch dessen unterschiedliches - oft überraschendes und unbekanntes - Repertoire werden geröhmt. So spielt das Ensemble Kammermusik, Kammerorchestermusik, Oratorien und Opern.
Jan Willem de Vriend Conductor
Jan Willem de Vriend is the artistic director of Combattimento Consort Amsterdam and since 2006 the chief conductor and artistic director of the Dutch Symphony Orchestra.
Combattimento Consort Amsterdam devotes itself to the music of about 1600 to 1830. Since its founding in 1982, it has performed virtually throughout the world as well as on many CDs, DVDs and television productions. For decades, Combattimento Consort Amsterdam has had its own concert series at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw in which many entirely unknown – and mostly unpublished – pieces are performed alongside more familiar works. In addition to having served as concertmaster with various ensembles, De Vriend developed a career as a conductor. Opera conducting has come to play a significant role. He has led Combattimento Consort Amsterdam in unknown operas by Gassmann, Rameau, Heinchen and Haydn, among others, as well as familiar operas by such composers as Monteverdi, Handel, Rossini and Mozart. For the opera houses of Lucern, Strasbourg, Barcelona and Enschede, he has conducted operas by Handel, Mozart, Verdi, Strauss and others.
Since De Vriend was named chief conductor in 2006, the Dutch Symphony Orchestra has become a notable phenomenon on the Netherlands’ musical scene. It has presented semi-scenic performances of works by Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss and Mendelssohn. There were premieres of works by Offenbach, Say and Mahler. And by substituting historical instruments in the brass section, it has developed its own distinctive sound in the 18th- and 19th-century repertoire. Recently, the orchestra performed music by Schumann at festivals in Spain. It is currently recording Beethoven’s complete symphonies conducted by De Vriend. Its long Mahler tradition is being continued in recordings and tours.
De Vriend has been a guest conductor with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, the Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic, the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, The Hague Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, as well as orchestras in Germany, Sweden and Australia. He is often invited to conduct both in the Netherlands and abroad. He has engagements pending, for example, with The Hague Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra as well as orchestras in China, Germany, Austria and Italy. He has also been invited by the Stanislavsky Theatre of Moscow to conduct an opera by Handel.
Combattimento Consort Amsterdam
Founded in 1982 by violinist Jan Willem de Vriend, the Combattimento Consort Amsterdam has developed into a close-knit ensemble specialising in music from 1600-1830.
The musicians’ wish not to focus solely on the standard repertoire has resulted in many interesting programmes featuring remarkable and little-known works, some of which are only available in manuscript. The performance of these compositions in conjunction with more familiar works has proved to be refreshing and inspiring to listeners and performers alike. Over the years the ensemble has given many memorable concerts and operatic performances including Handel’s Rodelinda, Alcina, also by Handel, and Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo, in collaboration with De Nationale Reisopera.
In September 2002 the ensemble has made its debut at the Early Music Holland Festival in Utrecht, giving two performances of Rameau’s opera Platée in a co-production with Onafhankelijk Toneel and the Nationale Reisopera.
In addition to numerous concerts in the Netherlands, the Combattimento Consort also appeared in various European countries and in venues outside of Europe. Successful tours in the United States, Japan and South America have always been attracting attention in national and international media. Concerts often have solo performances by members of the ensemble, but the Combattimento Consort has also worked with great performers such as Barbara Bonney, Andreas Scholl and Anthony Rolfe Johnson, Thomas Zehetmair and Sabine Meyer as well as joining forces with Collegium Vocale Gent and other groups. Several recordings have won the highest praise of the Dutch music magazine ‘Luister’. Over the years, the ensemble has made numerous CD recordings, including Handels La Resurrezione. Mozarts Der Stein der Weisen had its premiere in the Wielki Theatre in Lodz (Poland, 2003), and after that it toured in The Netherlands and Flanders. In 2004 the Combattimento Consort toured through Central Europe and The Netherlands with Handel’s opera Agrippina, the largest cultural project within the Netherlands Presidency of the European Union. In 2007, on the occasion of their 25th anniversary they performed Bibers magnificent Missa Salisburgensis, for the very first time in the original version with four organs and no less than four choirs.