Symphony No. 35 (“Haffner”)

The first of Mozart’s late symphonies was written for a commission from his childhood friend, Sigmund Haffner, who was going through a process of ennoblement. This symphony does not shy back from its monarch-like and aristocratic nature, as all the movements have some sort of royal aspect to them; the first movement has the great boldness of a monarch, the second movement has a gentle and rich atmosphere to it, the third movement is an almost imperial and forceful form, and the fourth movement is full of celebration and triumph. This symphony took me almost a full year to annotate it, since I wanted every one of my notes to be perfect. Through this process, I have learned more about how to mark up a score, and how those skills will help me become better prepared when I’m studying for my performances. To show you what I spend a lot of my time doing, I will post the first page of my score to the “Haffner” Symphony. Now, with this score, there are probably an excessive amount of notes because of this being my first time to actually mark up a score. Many of the notes on the bottom of the staff lines are music theory notes, which a conductor doesn’t always need to use. (However, it is important for any musician to have a basic knowledge of music theory.) In this category, I will end the post with one thing in each score I have studied that really sticks out and makes the music interesting and cool. I’ve circled a lot of the dotted rhythms because of their relevance to nobility. It was common back then that when a dotted rhythm was used, it signified royalty or triumph, which always was associated with the person in power. Since this symphony was dedicated to a nobleman, the dotted rhythms can be found everywhere, as it certainly fits the occasion.