Having performed all of Haydn’s quartets in public over the course of a few seasons, the New Esterházy Quartet has been turning its attention to works by his colleagues, contemporaries, and even pupils. There isn’t a concert in the Quartet’s 2012 lineup
that I’d want to miss (Boccherini, Onslow, and Schubert with Elisabeth LeGuin as guest cellist, and then Beethoven’s Op. 132!). Nevertheless, the palm goes to its April 30 performance at Berkeley’s Freight & Salvage: probably the first public performance in a couple hundred years of Anton Wranitzky’s string-quintet arrangement of Haydn’s Creation,
which was the very first publication of the oratorio in any form.
(Full disclosure: The parts weren’t “unearthed by the intrepid baroque detectives of the New Esterházy String Quartet,” per San Francisco Chamber Orchestra’s website; my husband and I lent them. All the more reason I’m eager to see this arrangement performed at last.)