A few additional observations not directly related to the preceding discussion should increase our understanding of Wanhal and his activities. Clearly one of his most important occupations was his teaching. There are no records, but a common thread seems to lead almost from the time of his arrival in Vienna in the 1760s throughout the remainder of his life. It could, however, be traced in several ways. Reports like Dlabacž's tell that, during his early years in Vienna, Wanhal was asked to give lessons to members of the upper nobility. His reputation must have been very good, since one of his students was Ignaz Pleyel, who studied with him during the 1760s, before he went to Italy. The instruction may have continued after his return, but little information is available about that stage of Pleyel's life. We are further informed, albeit indirectly, by a publisher's title page, that, two decades later, in 1781, the composer Fiala was also among his students. Other indirect reports also lurk in the literature, such as Czerny's remark made in 1806 that is cited in the chronological list. Another reference to his teaching can be assumed from title page dedications such as on Torricella's=Artaria's op. 35 (1783): TROIS CAPRISES./ Pour le Clavecin ou Piano Forte / Dediées / A SON EXELLENCE / MADAME / LA / COMTESSE DE LESLYE / NEE / COMTESSE / DE / WALDSTEIN ET WARTENBERG. The most impressive record of his dedication to his teaching is presented by publishers records. They show that, especially in Wanhal's last years, they issued a great deal of his music for pianoforte and organ, as well as some instructional material. Much of the latter, e.g., his Anfangsgründe des Generalbasses issued by Steiner in 1817, was published without opus number.
That Wanhal performed as a keyboardist and violinist (and perhaps as a cellist) is accepted now, but the idea that he was a flutist circulated during his lifetime.113 It probably sprang from a traveling virtuoso flutist named Rüsche who called himself Vanhal. His playing might have been quite good, since a poem, allegedly composed by Catherine II of Russia, praises his playing. The accounts of two composers, Benda and Dittersdorf, tell that they confronted the imposter and upbraided him for his brazenness. Dittersdorf, talking about his early years in Johannisberg, speaks of the flutist with considerable vehemence. That person may have been the same as the "Vanhal" mentioned by Johann Christian Schubart in his Ideen, as a member of the orchestra in Amsterdam.114 Wanhal actually composed a number of works for flute, including concertos, chamber music with strings, and duos, but I have no confirmation that he played the flute, or that he composed a large work which included canons and harps.
MorrowConcertLife adds an important source for information about eighteenth-century Vienna. Unfortunately it adds little to our knowledge about Wanhal even though Morrow sometimes alludes to his arena of activity, thereby supporting and emphasizing her contention that most information is lost. Her findings are most useful, but tantalizing because they show that much has disappeared, e.g., some of the Academies of 1770, 1772, and 1773 would surely have included symphonies of Wanhal.115
Wanhal's not assuming a position as Regens chori in one of Vienna's churches shows that he was enough of a pragmatist to avoid taking on all the politically tinged responsibilities of such a position. Even though he was obviously highly motivated by his religious precepts, so strongly voiced in A-a's "bigotterey," he did not join a monastic order perhaps because he was a loner who enjoyed his freedom and had little desire for constant companionship. I assume that he was paid for music he composed for the church, and that, while supporting himself, he also satisfied his internal need to write religious music, and his artistic principles. The church's approval of him is shown by the fact that his two final residences were owned by St. Stephens, the main cathedral of Vienna.116
Wanhal's published compositions for church use include preludes, fugues, modulation schemes, and cadenzas for the organ, and masses, offertories, Pange lingue, etc., which he began to publish ca. 1785.117 They form, however, only a small portion of the great quantity of music he composed for the church throughout his career. The following summary catalog of these compositions is probably a fairly accurate account. It was compiled by collating Dlabacž's listing and Weinmann's catalog given in WeinmannWanhalCat together with Schätzmeister, Ignaz Sauer's lists of the music he found in Wanhal's Nachlass and my own additions.118
Although the general impression is given that, during his final period, Wanhal composed and published relatively few serious instrumental works, catalogs of the period show that the programmatic pieces so objectionable to Gerber were issued by two publishers: Eder and Sauer, who perceived the depth of the market for such entertaining parlor music. They also, however, published serious works, especially sonatas and concertos. For example, Wanhal's sonata for clarinet and piano-forte, advertised by Sauer in WZ for July 18, 1801, is a significant composition. It was the first of two such works issued by Sauer for clarinet, and it may have been the first sonata published for that instrument.119
Other publishers also printed considerable numbers of Wanhal's small-scale pieces, but they too published larger compositions. The list of his published works with opus numbers given in Essay no. 4 cannot be all inclusive, especially regarding the smaller compositions produced during his final period. Even so, the more than 270 of his compositions issued during that time included many items of chamber music and concertos, especially with keyboard. Among such works is, e.g., the piano concerto, D1, advertised by André as op.14 in 1788; an impressive work of substance, it is not to be considered in the same class with the little sonatinas of the same period.120 The minimal orchestra required (2 vn and bs) shows Wanhal's (and the publishers') typical concern, for the practicalities of the marketplace. Regardless, he produced a work worthy of performance then and now.
One of the most remarkable of Wanhal's serious compositions is also probably the least known, his Trauergesang bey dem Tode Joseph des Zweiten published by Artaria in 1790. Although almost always referred to as a song, it is actually a seven movement cantata written for voice (bass or soprano) with an orchestrally-conceived piano accompaniment. That Wanhal would compose such a substantial (714 mm) and intense composition suggests that it was his attempt to express his gratitude at the life he had been able to lead in Vienna after his escape from bondage. Referring to Joseph II, the text says "He broke the chains of bondage for body and spirit."121 The only reference I have seen to a connection between Wanhal and Joseph II is in A-a's previously-cited biographical account which tells that they met and spoke at length in Bologna during Wanhal's visit to Italy. I have not studied the work or the circumstances that called it into being, but I believe that it may represent his inner personal feelings, as was impossible in his usual musical circumstances. It is unique among Wanhal's composition known to me.
H. C. Robbins Landon has often raised questions about the extent to which the contemporaries of Joseph Haydn were his followers (adherents? imitators?). Wanhal is one of his targets. One of his most celebrated attempts to do so may be found in his Haydn: Chronicle and Works where he calls Wanhal a seguace of Haydn.122 Concerning the question of Wanhal's being an imitator of Haydn, Robert Sondheimer, an earlier and respected historian, expressed the opposite point of view. In his opinion:
The early symphonies of Vanhall and Haydn have no formal similarities. After some early scholastic experiments Vanhall soon developed the above-mentioned Viennese touch; later he formed his ideas to a wider range. At first (in his early years) he had an abundance of lively thoughts which he could hardly fit into a symphonic movement, but in the seventies he became one of the active proponents of a longer, more symphonic development and was capable of widely expanding his themes. Haydn took the opposite way. He first created the structure (form) and then made it attractive with Viennese spirit (dash, élan).123
I do not doubt that Wanhal must have heard some of Haydn's symphonies; but my systematic- analytical studies, support Sondheimer's conclusion. Neither it or any of the other studies reported in this book, biography, authenticity and dating, sources, provide information which suggests that Wanhal ". . . took Haydn as his model124 . . . ." Nor can it be said that in symphony g1 Wanhal ". . . uses Haydn's Symphony No. 39 as its model . . . ," or that ". . . the opening of its Finale represents Wanhal's adaptation of the bold style in Haydn that we have been examining . . . ." As a matter of principle I have, with few exceptions, avoided making direct comparisons of Wanhal's symphonies with those of his contemporariesâ€”for the simple reason that usually none of the works in question, as in the case of g1 and I: 39, can be accurately dated. In the present instance, however, it is known that Haydn was acquainted with g1 because it is found in the EsterhÃ¡zy archive. Conversely, however, given the infrequency of Haydn's visits to Vienna, there is no assurance that Wanhal ever heard I: 39.
What the studies have shown is that Wanhal was a truly creative composer. Proof that he was a follower of (or a model for) Haydn can not, at any rate, be demonstrated by comparing undateable works. Nonetheless, Wanhal was indisputably one of the leading composers in Viennese circles. To what extent Alfred Einstein's belief that his influence would be discernible awaits comparable future studies of the other composers who were on the scene at the same time, including Joseph Haydn.
Wanhal's Residence in Vienna
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