Five of the best lesser-known Beethoven works to discover

We introduce you to some of the unknown or rarely performed Beethoven works we think you should know about

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Wellington’s Victory

Originally written for a panharmonicon, an automatic orchestral organ, the piece marked the victory at the Battle of Vitoria in 1813.

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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.

Waldstein Variations

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.

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