| Adalbert Gyrowetz was born on 20 February 1765 in Böhmisch Budweis, sixty-five miles south or Prague and then, as now, more famous for producing beer than musicians! His music studies began with his father who was choirmaster of the cathedral, and continued while he read law at the University in Prague. Later in life, as he travelled around central Europe, he befriended many composers, including Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven (he was one of the pall bearers at Beethoven’s funeral). His compositions number some thirty operas, ballets and incidental music, over forty symphonies, a huge body of chamber music, many songs and various sacred works including eleven masses.
Gyrowetz’s Symphony in E flat, op. 6 No. 2 is modestly scored for strings, two oboes, bassoon and two horns. Its first movement is an Andante in B flat and in ternary form, the ‘A’ section being scored for full orchestra and the ‘B’ section for winds alone in E flat. The third movement is a sturdy Minuet and trio featuring the horn. The finale is a rondo, notable for its widely-modulating central episode.
The Symphony in F, Op. 6 No. 3 is scored for the same forces. It begins with a waltz-like Allegro with a smiling second subject in two distinct halves and a taught, interesting development. The slow movement, in D minor and in a compact sonata form, is weighty and dramatic, but some relief is offered by the lyrical second subject. A Minuet which features some syncopation frames a melodious trio and is followed by a brisk Rondo.
The Symphony in D, Op, 12 No. 1 is scored for strings, two flutes, two oboes, two horns, two trumpets and timpani. A short slow introduction prefaces a busy, festive Allegro with a gentle second subject shared by the strings and first oboe. There is a surprisingly fierce development based on the first bar of the allegro, and subtly varied recapitulation. Trumpets and drums are silent in the slow movement, a gentle Andante poco adagio in G. The Minuet and trio are then followed by a brisk and distinctly Haydnish rondo.