>> I'm embarrassed to say that I still don't get Haydn. I find him
>> pleasant enough, but as I've described him to a friend,
>> "Mozart without the genius." I'm sure it's my loss. Perhaps some day.
When I was a young classical nut, Haydn did little for me, and I considered him to be nothing much, especially when compared to Beethoven or Schubert, heck, Berwald! Historically important, maybe, but his actual music? Yawn...
These days (I'm now 50), he is an absolute favorite. When Brilliant Classics issued Fischer's Haydn Symphonies, I spent a couple of years listening repeatedly (like 10 or 20 spins) to each disc, chronologically. It was among the most amazing musical experiences I've had, in that almost every single symphony had at least something, some moment, that was wonderful (and many symphonies had much more than one such moment).
But 30 years ago, when Dorati's cycle was the only way to go for the "complete", if you'd suggested I buy, let alone listen to, all of Haydn's symphonies, I would've laughed at the thought. Amazing how Haydn somehow improved over the past 30 years...