Franz Joseph Haydn
The Creation - 4th Day
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732 – 1809)
One of the most prolific and prominent composers of the classical period.
He is often called the "Father of the Symphony" and "Father of the String
Quartet" because of his important contributions to these genres. He was also
instrumental in the development of the piano trio and in the evolution of sonata
A life-long resident of Austria, Haydn spent much of his career as a court
musician for the wealthy Hungarian aristocratic Esterházy family on their remote
estate in Eisenstadt.
Isolated from other composers and trends in music until the later part of his long
life, he was, as he put it "forced to become original".
Joseph Haydn was the brother of Michael Haydn, himself a highly regarded
composer, and Johann Evangelist Haydn, a tenor. He was also a friend of
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and a teacher of Ludwig van Beethoven.
His influence upon later composers is immeasurable
Haydn was prolific not just because he lived 77 years and was a tireless worker
with an inexhaustible musical imagination, but also because of the circumstances
of his musical career: he was the last prominent beneficiary of the system of
noble patronage that helped to nourish European musical composition since the
Haydn’s Most Famous Works
Cello Concert No.1
Strings Quartets Op.76
Oboe Concerto in C major
Piano Sonata No.31 in A flat
Lord Nelson Mass
Oratorio The Creation
Oratorio The Four Seasons
Symphony No.34 in D minor
Symphony No.45 Farewell
Symphony No.88 In G major
Symphony No.92 Oxford
Symphony No.82 The Bear
Symphony No.83 The Hen
Symphony No.85 The Queen
Symphony No.94 Surprise
Symphony No.100 Military
Symphony No.101 The Clock
Symphony No.102 in B flat
Symphony No.103 The Drum Roll
Symphony No.104 London
Symphony No.94 “Surprise”
In G major - Mov.2
Catalog of Haydn works
The Hoboken-Verzeichnis is the catalog of over 750 works by Joseph Haydn as
compiled by Anthony van Hoboken.
Divertimenti in 4 and more Parts (47)
String Quartets (83)
Divertimenti in 3 Parts (11)
String Trios (21)
Various Duos (6)
Concertos for Various Instruments
Various Works for Baritone (12)
Trios for Baritone, Violin or Viola and Cello (126)
Duos with Baritone (25)
Concertos for Baritone (3)
Divertimenti with Piano (13)
Trios for Piano, Violin or Flute and Cello (40)
Piano Sonatas (52)
Piano Pieces (12)
Piano 4 Hands (2)
Keyboard Concertos (11)
Pieces for Mechanical Clock (Flötenuhr) (32)
Works about The Seven Last Words of Christ
Other Sacred Works
Cantatas and Arias with Orchestra
Songs with 2, 3, and 4 Parts
Songs and Cantatas with Piano
Canons (Sacred 10; Secular 47)
Marionette Operas (Singspiele)
Arrangement of Scottish (273) and Welsh (60) Folksongs
Chronology of the Austrian Composers
Ignaz Holzbauer (1711-1783)
Christoph Wagenseil (1715-1777)
Joseph Haydn (1732-1809)
Carl Ditters von Dittersdorf (1739-1799)
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Franz Schubert (1797-1828)
Johann Strauss (Father) (1804-1849)
Franz von Suppé (1819-1895)
Anton Bruckner (1824-1896)
Johann Strauss (1825-1899)
Josef Strauss (1827-1870)
Eduard Strauss (1835-1916)
Gustav Mahler (1860-1911)
Arnold Schönberg (1874-1951)
Fritz Kreisler (1875-1962)
Robert Stolz (1880-1975)
Cello Concerto No.1 Mov.3
Franz Joseph Haydn was born on March 31, 1732 as a son of the wheelwright
and later market judge Mathias Haydn and his wife Anna Maria in the village of
Rohrau (Lower Austria).
They had twelve children but only six survived, Franz Joseph and his two
brothers Michael and Johann Evangelist and the three sisters Franziska, Anna
Maria and Anna Katharina.
From 1738 he lived at the home of a relative, Johann Mathias Frank in Hainburg
and received a musical basic education.
In 1740 Georg von Reutter, musical director at St.Stephan Cathedral in Vienna,
discovers him. He took Haydn to Vienna, where he was a choir singer for nine
In 1749 his voice breaking began, Haydn could not reach the high tones and he
was dismissed from the choir of St.Stephan.
He found accommodation at Johann Michael Spangler´s house, a member of the
cathedral choir and lived on casual jobs as for instance violinist in ensembles
and orchestras as well as music teacher.
From 1753 to 1757, on recommendation of the imperial poet Pietro Metastasio
he was employed by the Italian composer Niccola Porpora. Haydn becomes his
pupil; to him he owes the "true fundaments of composition".
In 1755, he composed the first string quartets for Count Joseph Fürnberg of
Castle Weinzierl near Wieselburg in Lower Austria. The 4 players were: Count
Fürnberg, his confessor, his steward and Joseph Haydn.
In 1759, on recommendation of Gluck and Ditterdorf, Count Karl Josef Franz of
Morzin employed him as an orchestra director at the Lukavec castle, near Pilsen,
the salary was 200 florins. For this 16-man-Orchestra Haydn wrote symphonies.
In 1760 Haydn got married with the daughter of a hairdresser Maria Anna Aloysia
Apollonia Keller. They did not have children.
Patronage of the Esterhazy Principality
In 1761, a decisive change in Haydn’s life occurred, when he entered the service
of the Hungarian Prince Esterházy in Eisenstadt, Burgenland.
Haydn became Vice-Kapellmeister for Prince Paul Anton Esterházy and after his
death, he worked for Prince Nicolaus Joseph, the Magnificent.
Under Haydn’s direction the small orchestra in Eisenstadt, developed into a good
ensemble. The number of musicians was increased to 25.
Haydn had a secured income at the Esterhazy's Palace and so he could develop
his personal musical style. He wrote many compositions in these 30 years working
for the Esterhazy Principality.
The House of Esterházy was a Hungarian, noble family in Hungary beginning in
the Middle Ages. From the 17th century they were among the great landowner
magnates of the Kingdom of Hungary, during the time it was part of the Habsburg
Empire and later Austria-Hungary.
Its members held a number of military, political, and religious positions and were
influential patrons of the arts.
Oboe Concerto in C major - Mov.1
The Esterhazy Palace
Haydn Hall in the Esterhazy Palace
Prince Nikolaus Esterhazy (1714-1790)
Prince Anton Esterhazy (1738-1794)
In 1765, Haydn made a catalog of his works, the so-called "Entwurfskatalog".
In 1770, Haydn's composition style changed. A kind of "Storm and Stress“
period showed up in strange minor harmony and sudden musical transitions.
In 1773, Maria Theresa, Queen of Hungary and Archduchess of Austria
visited Esterhazy Palace
In 1775, April 2nd and 4th
, Haydn conducts the premiere of “il Ritorno di Tobia”
In 1776, Haydn's biography was published, titled "Gelehrten Oesterreich".
Haydn attained popularity also outside of the Esterhazy Palace and published
works also in other countries.
In 1779 for the first time Haydn's symphonies were performed in France.
Also in this year, the opera house in the Esterhazy Palace was destroyed by a
Haydn and Mozart
In 1781 Haydn developed a close friendship with Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.
Haydn and Mozart played together string quartets. Haydn was very much
impressed of Mozart. It is remarkable that Haydn composed no more operas and
concerts, this was the domain of Mozart.
Haydn ‘s international fame spreads. He establishes contacts with Spain, France
and England. In 1782, when Haydn was 50 years old, his symphonies were
performed in America for the first time.
In 1785, Mozart dedicated to the old Haydn six string quartets: K 387, 421, 428,
458, 464, 465 and described him in a long and cordial presentation letter as
“Mio caro Amico".
In 1785, Haydn visits Mozart in Vienna and assures to his father:
"Before God I tell you as an honest man that your son is the greatest composer
whom I know personally and by reputation; he has taste and besides the highest
insight into the art of composition."
Symphony No.82 “The Bear”
In C major - Mov.4
The Paris Symphonies
In 1784, Haydn is commissioned to compose 6 symphonies, the Paris Symphonies
Nos. 82 – 87. The work was composed for a large Parisian orchestra called "Le
Concert de la loge Olympique“.
Joseph Boulogne, Chevalier de St-Georges founded in 1781 “Le Concert de la Loge
Olympique”. He was a noted violin virtuoso as well as composer. He was also the
conductor of this orchestra.
In order to promote it better and gain more renown for it, he commissioned 6
symphonies to Joseph Haydn, the so called "Paris" Symphonies. St-Georges
himself traveled to Vienna in 1784 to deliver the commission.
These works by Haydn were composed to a higher level than previous works by
him, once again putting him at the forefront of critical and popular acclaim. Some of
the most popular are:
Symphony No. 82 - The Bear
Symphony No. 83 - The Hen
Symphony No. 84 - In Nomine Domini
Symphony No. 85 - La Reine ("The queen")
Death of Prince Nikolaus Esterhazy - I “The Magnificent”
The musical activity at Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt had become routine for
Haydn and with time he felt more and more hampered in the province.
He asked in vain for permission to leave Eisenstadt and go to Vienna during the
absence of the prince.
The freedom, which the prince did not concede to him, was bestowed on Haydn
after all, because Nikolaus Esterházy died unexpectedly on September 1790.
All the musical activities at the Esterházy Palace were stopped and the new head
of the family, Prince Anton, dismissed the whole orchestra.
Haydn was discharged from office, but he remained titular princely conductor. His
financial situation was secured, because he received a considerable annuity of
1400 florins per year.
Now Haydn was a free man and could leave Eisenstadt. He went to Vienna and
moved into a room at the house of the court officer Johann Nepomuk
The London Symphonies
Haydn received an offer from the London concert agent Johann Peter Salomon to
go to London to perform his symphonies with large a orchestra there.
Haydn undertook two journeys to England, the first between 1791-1792 and the
The first concert took place in the Hanover Square Rooms. Haydn's concerts were
very successful and in this time Haydn composed twelve of his most well known
symphonies, “The London Symphonies”, Nos. 93 to 104. Some of the most popular
Symphony No. 94 - The Surprise
Symphony No. 96 - The Miracle
Symphony No. 100 - Military
Symphony No. 101 - The Clock
Symphony No. 103 – The Drumroll
Symphony No. 104 – London
In 1791, he received an honorary doctorate from the University of Oxford. Haydn
was even thinking to become English citizen. Haydn received enticing offers, even
the prince from Wales asked Haydn to stay. But Haydn returned to Vienna on
August 15, 1795.
Symphony No.94 ”Surprise”
In G major - Mov.3
After successes in London his pension was increased by the Esterhazy Principality
to 2300 florins.
Haydn went to Vienna and composed again for the Esterhazy family, which was
meanwhile again led by an music interested prince, Nikolaus II.
Haydn and Beethoven
In addition he taught some music pupils, among them from 1792, Ludwig van
Beethoven, whom it had become acquainted with during a stay in Bonn in July
Haydn took the young Beethoven along with him to Eisenstadt in summer 1793
and in autumn he wrote to the elector Maximilian Franz that Beethoven will
become in time, Europe's greatest composer and that he was proud to be his
Beethoven dedicated three piano sonatas to his former teacher in 1795-1796 and
after the gala performance of the Schöpfung Oratorio at the old University in 1808,
he shall have wept kissing the hand of the old man.
His Last Years
In 1796, He starts composing "The Creation".
In 1797, Haydn was admitted unanimously as member of the "Tonkünstler
Societät" appointed as honorary member. This "association for relief of widows
and orphans of Austrian musicians" was reorganized in 1862 and assumed the
name of the “Haydn society”.
Also in 1797, The Imperial Anthem is written
In 1798, Haydn is appointed member of the Royal Swedish Academy.
First performance of the Oratorio "The Creation".
In 1799, He starts composing "The Seasons".
In 1800, Joseph Haydn's wife died. From 1802 Haydn's health worsened and he
could not compose anymore.
In 1801 First performance of the oratorio "The Seasons".
Symphony No.85 “The Queen”
In B flat major - Mov.2
In 1803, The City of Vienna awards him the "Great Golden Salvator Medal". the
last String Quartet Op.103 remains unfinished.
In 1804, Haydn is appointed honorary member of the Philharmonic Society of
Lubljana. He becomes honorary citizen of Vienna.
In 1805 He is appointed "member of the Paris Conservatoire".
In 1808 The Philharmonic Society of St. Petersburg makes him an honorary
, Haydn’s last public appearance at a performance of "The Creation",
which was also attended by Ludwig van Beethoven.
On May 13th1809, Napoleon’s troops occupy the Imperial City of Vienna.
On May 31st
1809, Franz Joseph Haydn dies.
He is buried in the so-called "Hundsturm Cemetery", today the 12th district of
Vienna. This place was later named Haydn Park.