Ivan Ilić reveals a long lost arrangement of Haydn’s Symphony No 44, “Mourning” for solo piano.

How did you come across the transcription?

A 100-year old woman in Cologne had a young neighbor who occasionally helped her with groceries. When she died last Winter (2015) at age 102, with no heirs, she left the neighbor a HUGE crate of old scores. The neighbor ​– who doesn’t read music ​– put the crate away. A few weeks later, she met my friend Veronika by chance at the local supermarket.

Veronika, who works in the music business, had just moved to Cologne; she was happy to make a new friend. The two met for drinks, and got to talking. The young neighbour told Veronika she had a surprise for her and told her to come with her car. She gave her the crate of music, telling her that she would surely find something to do with it.

Veronika called me in France and told me the story. She said “there’s probably nothing of interest here, but who knows? Maybe it would be fun for you to come to Germany and check”. I found a low-cost flight to Cologne, it was really just an excuse...