Giovanni Antonini - Haydn 2032, Vol. 12: Les jeux et les plaisirs - Apple Music
Les jeux et les plaisirs ("games and fun") is the apt title for Volume 12 in the Basel Chamber Orchestra's long-range project to record Haydn's 107 surviving symphonies. There of them—Nos. 60, 66 and 61, according to their supposed order of composition—are brought to thrilling life here under Giovanni Antonioni's high-octane direction. Written in 1776 to entertain Prince Nikolaus Esterházy and his aristocratic guests at the Esterházy Palace, each bristles with what might comfortably pass for tavern tunes and country dances. The Basel players have a blast in the madcap outer movements of Symphony No. 66, the joker in this delightful album's pack. For good measure, the tracklist includes the Toy Symphony, attributed to Haydn's younger brother Michael and anonymous others, complete with children's rattle, cuckoo whistle and "organ hens".