Beethoven, Haydn, and the Concept of Creation

Essay by Ami MukerjeeUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, November 1996

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good paper, very impressive if i say so myself. "Nice job! Well organized."

Among the influential composers of classical music, there have been few who have contributed so much in both talent, creativity, and style as Joseph Haydn and Ludwig Van Beethoven. Both extremely talented in the art of classical composition, Haydn and Beethoven placed their heart, soul and ingenuity in their music as is clearly illustrated in Haydn's The Creation and Beethoven's The Creatures of Prometheus. Both composers display sheer genius in their very effective ways of displaying complex themes through their musical works - in this case, the concept of creation is common to both pieces under study.

Haydn's connection to the concept of Genesis and its subtleties is quite evident thought his entire composition. Looking at Haydn's religious piety and as some would argue, unrealistic optimism, it is only fitting that Haydn expressed the concept of creation as an oratoria, which is the biblical counterpart to opera; instead of the various propounded themes of then-contemporary opera, the underlying theme is strictly of biblical concepts and stories.

The opening pitch and dynamic of the work are absolutely equal. The overture is introduced in fortissimo and without vigor. The possible reason for such a SLOW pace was to make it hard for the listener to ascertain a steady pulse. In aiming for such ambiguity, Haydn intentionally fails to express a definite key, chord or melody in the first few bars, and as a result the listener is met with a rather formless initial introduction. Upon the completion of those initial bars of music, the listener is thrown a stray of fragmented melodies with no cadence. The normal convention of tonality is cleverly ignored by Haydn. It is quite interesting to note that the piece ends in an...