List of piano trios by Joseph Haydn

List of piano trios by Joseph Haydn

This is a list of piano trios by Joseph Haydn, including the chronological number assigned by H. C. Robbins Landon and the number they are given in Anthony van Hoboken's catalogue of his works.

Haydn's early trios are considered minor works and are seldom played except in the context of complete editions. In contrast, the later trios, starting in the mid 1780's, reflect the composer's full musical maturity and are greatly admired by critics (see below).

The role of the instruments

The piano trios of Haydn are dominated by the piano part. The violin only plays the melody a certain amount of the time, and is often doubled by the piano when it does. The cello part is very much subordinated, usually just doubling the bass line in the piano. Charles Rosen discusses and defends this asymmetry, relating it to the sonority of the instruments of Haydn's day: the piano was fairly weak and "tinkling" in tone, and benefited from the tonal strengthening of other instruments. [See Rosen 1997, 353]


The dominance of the piano part does not imply that the late trios are not of the highest quality. Rosen devotes an appreciative chapter of his well-known book "The Classical Style" to them, [Rosen 1997, chapter VI.2] and says that Haydn's piano trios are "along with the Mozart concertos the most brilliant piano works before Beethoven." [Rosen (1997, 352)] Gretchen Wheelock refers to the trios as "incredible", adding "the late works especially are brilliantly virtuosic, exploiting the full idiomatic range of the instrument [i.e., the piano] . They are also among the most harmonically adventurous of his works in any genre, often reaching into remote keys via enharmonic modulations. As such they are challenging essays for both players and listeners." [Wheelock 1997, 115-116]

Early trios

*No. 1 in F major, Hoboken 15/37
*No. 2 in C major, Hoboken 15/C1
*No. 3 in G major, Hoboken 14/6
*No. 4 in F major, Hoboken 15/39
*No. 5 in G minor, Hoboken 15/1
*No. 6 in F major, Hoboken 15/40
*No. 7 in G major, Hoboken 15/41
*No. 8 Hoboken 15/33 (lost)
*No. 9 Hoboken 15/D1 (lost)
*No. 10 in A major, Hoboken 15/35
*No. 11 in E major, Hoboken 15/34
*No. 12 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/36
*No. 13 in B flat major, Hoboken 15/38
*No. 14 in F minor, Hoboken 15/f1
*No. 15 in D major, Hoboken 15/deest
*No. 16 in C major, Hoboken 14/C1
*No. 17 in F major, Hoboken 15/2

Later trios

*No. 18 in G major, Hoboken 15/5 (1784)
*No. 19 in F major, Hoboken 15/6 (1784)
*No. 20 in D major, Hoboken 15/7 (1784)
*No. 21 in B flat major, Hoboken 15/8 (1784)
*No. 22 in A major, Hoboken 15/9 (1785)
*No. 23 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/10 (1785)
*No. 24 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/11 (1788)
*No. 25 in E minor, Hoboken 15/12 (1788)
*No. 26 in C minor, Hoboken 15/13 (1789)
*No. 27 in A flat major, Hoboken 15/14 (1790)
*No. 28 in D major, Hoboken 15/16 (1790)
*No. 29 in G major, Hoboken 15/15 (1790)
*No. 30 in F major, Hoboken 15/17 (1790)
*No. 31 in G major, Hoboken 15/32 (1792)Three trios (H. 18-20) dedicated to Princess Maria Theresa, wife of Prince Anton Esterházy:
*No. 32 in A major, Hoboken 15/18 (1793)
*No. 33 in G minor, Hoboken 15/19 (1793)
*No. 34 in B flat major, Hoboken 15/20 (1794)Three trios (H. 21-23) dedicated to Princess Maria Josepha, wife of Prince Nicholas Esterházy:
*No. 35 in C major, Hoboken 15/21 (1794)
*No. 36 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/22 (1794)
*No. 37 in D minor, Hoboken 15/23 (1794)Three trios (H. 24-26) dedicated to Rebecca Schroeter:
*No. 38 in D major, Hoboken 15/24 (1795)
*No. 39 in G major, Hoboken 15/25 (1795) "Gypsy"
*No. 40 in F sharp minor, Hoboken 15/26 (1795)Two standalone trios (H. 31,30):
*No. 41 in E flat minor, Hoboken 15/31 (1797)
*No. 42 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/30 (1797)Three trios (H. 27-29) dedicated to Theresa Jansen:
*No. 43 in C major, Hoboken 15/27 (1797)
*No. 44 in E major, Hoboken 15/28 (1797)
*No. 45 in E flat major, Hoboken 15/29 (1797)



*Rosen, Charles (1997) "The Classical Style: Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven". New York: Norton. Chapter VI.2 covers the trios in detail.
*Parakilas, James (1999) "Piano roles : three hundred years of life with the piano". New Haven, CT: Yale University Press. A history of the piano and its role in society. The book is richly illustrated.
*Wheelock, Gretchen (1999) "The classical repertory revisited: instruments, players, and styles," in Parakilas (1999), pp. 109-131.

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