Five of the best lesser-known Beethoven works to discover
Unknown, rarely performed and underrated Beethoven works we think you should know about
Originally written for a panharmonicon, an automatic orchestral organ, the piece marked the victory at the Battle of Vitoria in 1813.
Cantata on the Death of Emperor Joseph II, Wo0 87
Written for a memorial service by a 19-year-old Beethoven, it was premiered in 1884.
King Stephen, Op. 117
The overture is played today but the vocal movements that follow are forgotten. This 1811 piece refers to the first king of Hungary.
Three Equale for Four Trombones, Wo0 30
Written for All Soul’s Day in Linz Cathedral, 1812. Vocal arrangements were heard at Beethoven’s funeral.
Andante favori in F, Wo0 57
Rejected as the Waldstein Sonata’s second movement for being overlong, it took on its own life when published in 1805.
Written for the same Count Ferdinand von Waldstein of sonata fame, this is one of Beethoven’s earliest piano duets.
Grosse Fugue for piano duet
Demand for a four-hand piano arrangement of this work for string quartet led to Beethoven making his own.
Organ Fugue, Wo0 31
Published in the 19th century, Beethoven’s ‘complete’ works included three organ pieces. This fugue is his earliest.
British folk songs
The 179 arrangements of folk tunes were a money-spinner for Beethoven, thanks to publisher George Thomson.
Sextet for horns and string quartet, Op. 81b
Published in 1810, but written in the 1790s, this E flat chamber piece tests the two horn players’ technique.
Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.