|"I dress up a certain way because I respect the music."|
"Franz Joseph Haydn was sixty-four years old and semi-retired when he wrote his Trumpet Concerto. He had spent nearly three decades, beginning in 1761, laboring assiduously in the service of the exorbitantly wealthy Esterházy court and, in the process, becoming the most revered composer in all of Europe. For almost all of Haydn’s tenure, the reigning monarch was Prince Nicholas Esterházy, known as Nicholas the Magnificent thanks to the lavish festivities he underwrote for occasions of special political or social significance. He could well afford it; by some reckonings he was richer than even the Emperor of Austria. Prince Nicholas died on September 28, 1790, and he was succeeded by his son, Anton. The new prince did not much care for music, and a mere two days after his father’s death he fired the entire court orchestra and opera company, retaining only a small wind-band for ceremonial occasions. Haydn’s services would prove largely unnecessary to his court. The new prince therefore granted Europe’s most admired composer a pension of a thousand florins a year; and although he kept him on staff as his music director, he made it clear that no particular duties—or even attendance—would be required. For the first time in decades, Haydn was free to explore."
Source: SF Symphony