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Haydn festival

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1 April 2009 by Pete Mathers

Eisenstadt, Austria 19–25 September 2009

2009 is the bicentenary of the death of Joseph Haydn. Born the son of a wheelwright, he went on to become one of the greatest and certainly most popular composers of all time.

Haydn is universally acknowledged as the father of the string quartet but there is so much more to celebrate in his works – chamber music, operas, piano sonatas, string trios, and of course, his symphonies.

It is these that will be honoured during the weeklong homage to Haydn in Eisenstadt, not far from his birthplace at Rohrau. The musician, composer and Haydn scholar, Simon Rowland-Jones, will join the tour we are offering for the first three days, during which time he’ll give two talks on the life and work of the great composer.

Franz Joseph Hayden lived and worked in Eisenstadt for over 40 years composing and directing the royal orchestras. The small city is littered with his legacy. The Haydn Hall with its near perfect acoustics is just one of the venues used in the festival, but musical pilgrims will enjoy many sites of interest on the weeklong tour: the Haydn museum in Vienna, Haydn’s birthplace at Rohrau, his tomb in the Bergkirche, the Esterhazy Palace at Fertod and the lakeside town of Rust.

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