Welcome to the website of The Haydn Keyboard Project, a project dedicated to promoting the keyboard music of the great Classical composer Joseph Haydn. Find out who is involved in the project, what the experts have to say, and whether there are any events near to you. Read about Haydn, his life and his music, and listen to selected works. And, of course, don't hesitate to contact us if you have any comments or questions.
Who are we and what do we do?
The Haydn Keyboard Project aims to bring the music of the great classical composer Joseph Haydn closer to listeners and performers of the future.
Modern audiences of classical music, whether listening in concerts or via recordings, are busy people. They have little time to study their preferred composers. Yet their pleasure in the music would be enormously enhanced by a better understanding of what they are hearing.
Multi-media information, revealing the secrets of the beauty of Haydn’s keyboard music, will be easily accessible to present and future generations via this website, concerts, a newsletter, and other publications and events.
The project will provide novel insights into the composer's keyboard music and into the fascinating world of Haydn himself, beginning with the Esterhazy palaces and Vienna. It will reveal how he was captivated and inspired by his surroundings - by the military bands of his noble patron; by the dances and celebrations of his aristocratic and peasant contemporaries; by the sounds of the hunting horn; by the odd mechanical instruments in the Esterhazy collections; and especially by the old and new keyboard instruments available to him. Important too are Haydn's visits to London, the city in which he discovered the new virtuoso piano school and the first great public concert halls.
When complete, the Haydn Keyboard Project will record interviews with leading experts and performers of Haydn's keyboard music; as well as masterclasses on central features of the music. It will take audiences on virtual visits to the Esterhazy domains, to Vienna and London, where Haydn made his international name. It will provide intriguing glimpses of composer-players contemporary with Haydn, like Mozart, Clementi and Dussek. It will show costumed performances of the dances of his time and much more, including educational concerts of his greatest keyboard works, on harpsichord, clavichord, fortepiano, and modern piano. All this should make it much clearer, even to the non-expert, how Haydn produced his original musical effects and combined them into masterpieces, and why audiences and performers alike are still fascinated by his extraordinary achievements.
The informative website, events, concerts, and booklets will make it possible for existing audiences, but especially for the coming generation, to grasp the true meaning and attraction of classical music, via a better understanding of the wealth of Haydn's musical styles and ideas, his controlled but powerful expression, and his very personal sense of musical humour.
Cecily Lock www