The Cologne recording of Haydn Symphonies from1952 and 1953 presented here continuous the historic Fricsay-cycle at audite.
Fricsay’s repertoire was wide-ranging, extending from J.S. Bach to B.A. Zimmermann. He gave new impulses to the interpretation of the music of the 18th and 19th centuries and was, at the same time, open to all facets of modern music – he thus made Stravinsky, Schönberg and Berg more accessible to the public. During the first half of the 1950s, Fricsay was a frequently engaged orchestral conductor with the NWDR Symphony Orchestra in Cologne. He played works of contemporary composers there in symphony concerts and for recordings, also including the music of Joseph Haydn on his programmes – music which was rather neglected in the concert hall at that time.
Ferenc Fricsay was a modern interpreter. His success during the 1940s and ‘50s was due to his original, vital musicality, giving the listener the impression of great intensity in concerts and on recordings. His interpretations were reserved and transparent, arrived at with the greatest discipline. As a conductor a pioneer in the field of LP recordings, Fricsay made important contributions to the development of this medium during the post-war period.
With Fricsay’s Haydn recordings audite expands its series of historical recordings with an interpretation which clearly shows the greatness of this conductor (who unfortunately died far too early) in the powerful symphonies of Joseph Haydn.
"...Despite some drawbacks—a mediocre orchestra and merely adequate monaural sound—these are fine Haydn performances. Fricsay was a superb orchestra builder, raising a new radio orchestra called RIAS (Radio in the American Sector, of divided Berlin) to the near equal of that city’s great Philharmonic... I’m delighted to have this sample of Fricsay’s Haydn."
James H North - Fanfare - July/August 2008