The twelve “London Symphonies” comprise the sublime final statement of Haydn’s symphonic oeuvre. They were written for the London impresario Johann Peter Salomon, and Haydn himself conducted their premieres during his lengthy stays in the English metropolis in 1791/92 and 1794/95.
To this day, the G-major symphony, first performed in March 1792, numbers among Haydn’s most popular works. It owes its English nickname “Surprise” to the striking tutti chords in the Andante, which apparently caught the audience off guard. Haydn had consciously incorporated this effect at a later stage – and was thus subsequently also perfectly willing to authorize this nickname that had been dreamt up by a London musician. This popular work also spread rapidly through German-speaking countries, where it is still firmly established in the repertoire as the “symphony with the drumbeat.”
This study edition adopts the musical text of the Haydn Complete Edition, thereby guaranteeing the highest scholarly quality. An informative preface and a brief Critical Report make the handy score an ideal companion for all current and soon-to-be Haydn fans.