Joseph Haydn - A Compressed Biography

Name: Franz Joseph Haydn

Date of Birth: March 31, 1732

Date of Death: May 31, 1809

Place of Birth: Rohrau, Austria

Father: Mathias Haydn

Mother: Maria nee Koller

Wife: Maria Anna Aloysia Apollonia Keller

Main Instruments: Harpsichord, Violin and Pianoforte


Haydn served as a choirboy from as early as the age of eight in the Cathedral of St. Stephens, Vienna. Vienna was the perfect place for him to learn music because a number of music teachers lived and worked there.

Haydn's voice changed as he grew older and he was no longer able to sing as a choir boy so he was dismissed.

With no job, Haydn became a freelance musician playing with street bands and taught music lessons to children. Life was not easy at all for Joseph, at this stage he was struggling financially.


1756 - Employed by Baron Carl Josef Furnberg at Weinzeil, where he composed his first string quartet.

1757 - Employed full time by Count Morzin as a Kapellmeister (Music Director).

1761 - Employed by Prince Paul Anton as a Kapellmeister.


Haydn's love towards musical compositions caused him to gain the title "The Father of the Classical Symphony" or "The Father of the String Quartet". This was because of his great contribution to classical music.

Haydn also influences the lives of Mozart and Beethoven. He was said to be the music teacher of Beethoven.


Haydn is popularly known for three major types of works such as Symphonies, Masses and String Quartet. However, he did several piano trios, solo piano compositions, concertos and operas.


By 1802 Franz Haydn was a wealthy man. However, he got very sick and was unable to physically compose any music. Haydn died in 1809, but his music is still alive today.

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