Esterházy Allure

Eisenstadt-the regional capital of Austria’s Burgenland State gained importance during the Esterházy dynasty and the rise of classical composer Franz Joseph Haydn. https://www.biography.com/people/franz-joseph-haydn-9332156Eisenstadt Town SquareHanging out in this quaint city of just 14,000 a few balmy days gave me the chance to immerse myself into its rich culture and musical heritage. Bergkirche-Hayd Church

Eisenstadt owes much of its widespread cultural fame to the unwavering support and vision of the Esterhazy princes. Blue-blooded Hungarians, these influential noblemen acquired the city’s 13th century baroque castle in 1649, transforming it into a prominent center of courtly life and thriving cultural hotspot. During their 300-year reign, Haydn’s genius emerged. Eisenstadt Esterhazy Palace

Prince Paul Anton II, a patron of music, is credited for appointing 29 year-old Haydn as the court music director in 1761. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_II_Anton,_Prince_Esterházy For over forty years, many of Haydn’s glorious compositions were premiered here in the Esterházy palace’s Haydn Concert Hall. https://esterhazy.at/en/esterhazypalace/index.do Haydn Concert Hall

Touring the stately venue, I find myself flooded in red; rows of red velvet cushioned seats, brocaded window drapings. Spellbound, I daydream, sweet strains of violin melodies echoing off gold-paneled walls and frescoed ceilings.

Strolling into the adjacent palace grounds, the Greek-inspired Leopoldinen Temple overlooking a lily-hugging pond, charms, evoking fantasies of the once-upon-a-time secret outings of the Esterházy nobility. Palace Park

The Haydn House, the composer’s long-time residence sits adjacent to the town square and takes visitors on a tour through his extraordinary life. Haydn HouseHand-written manuscripts, musical instruments, and priceless memorabilia are showcased in addition to a multimedia presentation offering visitors a rare glimpse into the day-today life of the beloved composer.

It was March 31, 1732 when Baby Haydn slipped into this world in Rohrau, a rural village along the Hungarian border. Although his parents had no formal musical training, father Mathias loved folk music and taught himself to play the harp. Sing-a-longs became a regular practice fostering Haydn’s talent to eventually become an accomplished composer, influencing his contemporaries Mozart https://www.biography.com/people/wolfgang-mozart-9417115 and Beethoven. https://www.biography.com/people/ludwig-van-beethoven-9204862. The annual Haydn festival held late August since 1989, celebrating Haydn’s genius, showcases his timeless works to classical music aficionados from near and far. https://www.haydnfestival.at 

Haydn BirthplaceIn the sunny courtyard of Haydn’s modest birthplace, a thatched roof farmhouse, I reflect on his great symphonies, string quartets, masses, and concertos. Indeed a life well lived. Thank you for the music!

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One Comment Add yours

  1. Susan says:

    Just beautiful ~ thank you for sharing ❤

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