Haydn in the Original

 

What did Joseph Haydn's work sound like during his lifetime? Professor Wieslaw Woszczyk from McGill University, Canada, pianist Tom Beghin, and producer Martha de Francisco pursued the answer to this questions. Together they have presented one of the most unusual complete recordings of Haydn's work.

Woszczyk is currently a visiting researcher at RWTH Aachen, funded by a Theodore von Kármán fellowship. In his lecture, he explains how the original listening experience of the time could be imitated. Seven historical instruments were built for the project and nine virtual rooms were created, whose acustic architecture was precisely modeled after certain historical spaces. Woszczyk and his team were able to reconstruct how Haydn's sonatas, preludes, and capriccios must have sounded at the time they were composed.

The event was initiated by Professor Michael Vorländer, Head of the ITA – Institute of Technical Acoustics at RWTH and was a first-time collaboration with the HfMT of the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz Cologne. The presentation is was framed by two musical performances. Soprano Maria-Eunju Park and the director of the HfMT, Herbert Görtz on the piano, began the event with the aria of Gabriel ,"„Und Gott sprach…Nun beut die Flur das frische Grün“ from "The Creation." Pianist Mai Omine performed Haydn's Sonata 63 F-Dur to conclude the event. During a champagne reception following the event, there was a lively exchange between the guests and presenters.

"The Virtual Haydn“ was published as a CD/DVD and as a Blu-Ray by Naxos in 2008.