Sunday, 9 October 2016

Auf Wiedersehen

I was working in the kitchen last weekend and reached over to turn on an audio book to engage my brain from the more mundane.  The Resident Fan Boy had left the radio on at Epace musique (or whatever Radio-Canada is calling it these days), and before I could switch the machine to the CD setting to listen to Wolf Hall, my ear was caught by some rather lovely French horns, so I decided to enjoy them.

It definitely sounded like Handel or Haydn, but I couldn't place it.  During the final movement of whatever it was, the music seemed to be ebbing away and I turned up the volume.  I heard distant voices and clumping, and wandered if another signal was intruding.  Toward the very end, I could hear voices calling out softly:  "Auf Wiedersehn!"

I was rather spooked, until I worked out that I'd been listening to Haydn's "Farewell Symphony" which I haven't heard in years.

I gather this was an older recording made in London in the late forties or early fifties, hence the need to make audible departures.

A quick look around YouTube reveals that some orchestras play it straight - if you'll pardon the expression - while others take the opportunity to milk the joke for all it's worth.

Here's one of the latter sort.  The fun begins around the three-minute mark.

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