Bursting into life with JC Bach’s Symphony No 6 in G Minor on a wet and stormy Canberra evening, the Australian Haydn Ensemble (AHE) blew away the real-life storm happening outside with the drama and energy of the composer’s Sturm und Drangmusic.

Led by Erin Helyard at the fortepiano in a program inspired by the Enlightenment, with Artistic Director Skye McIntosh on violin, the horns of the AHE blasted out the powerful notes in the opening movement to drive the other instruments forward in this dramatic symphony.

Haydn's Farewell, Erin Helyard Erin Helyard

The clarity and dynamic that the AHE create on their period instruments leaves no one in doubt that they are a world-class ensemble, and possibly one of the best looking.

Helyard gave the opening address after the Bach and spoke about the period instruments they play and how some are tricky to tune, being less stable than modern instruments. The process of getting the string instruments to align can be quite time consuming, but well worth the effort to create the effect they do.

The delicacies of Mozart were at once on display through the period instruments in his Piano Concerto...