Nikolaus Harnoncourt's recording of Haydn Symphony No. 94
In the September edition of Gramophone
Nikolaus Harnoncourt's Teldec recording of Haydn's Symphony No.94 "Surprise" wins the top accolade from reviewer Richard Wigmore:
"... I would have to go for Nikolaus Harnoncourt, with the Concertgebouw evidently relishing their period-style metamorphosis.... For me, this Surprise
uniquely combines meticulous attention to the fine print of Haydn's score with a sense of exhilarating freedom. Harnoncourt has long been on a mission to shock and challenge in the Classical repertoire. Here, crucially, he doesn't forget to beguile and cajole as well."
"Rasping brass, gunfire timpani, lean, precisely articulated strings: Harnoncourt virtually transforms the Concertgebouw Orchestra into a period band. They play as if inspired, in a wonderfully colourful, inventive performance, full of enlivening detail, powerful in its symphonic impetus, yet also embracing wit, warmth and lyrical grace."
This recording is available in the set of Haydn symphonies 68 & 93-104
(illustrated) and also on Elatus
with symphonies 96 "Miracle" and 103 "Drum Roll"