Valencia Baryton Project Members

Matthew Baker, baryton
Brett Walfish, viola
Benjamin Birtle, cello

Photo credit: Alex Baker (


The Valencia Baryon Project showcases a rare gem of the Baroque period, the baryton (a bowed string instrument with extra resonating and plucked strings) in a sonorous trio with viola and cello. The program includes highlights from Haydn's extensive baryton repertoire as well as recent commissions.

Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809): Baryton Trio No. 67 in G major, Hob. XI:67
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809): Baryton Trio No. 9 in A major, Hob. XI:9
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809): Baryton Trio No. 71 in A major, Hob. XI:71

Steve Zink: The River (2020) (written for the Valencia Baryton Project)
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809): Baryton Trio No. 87 in A minor, Hob. XI:87
John Pickup: Prelude No. 1 (2021) (written for the Valencia Baryton Project)
Franz Joseph Haydn (1732-1809): Baryton Trio No. 69 in D major, Hob. XI:69


A string trio with four instruments? A harpsichord hiding behind the cello? The Valencia Baryton Project has dedicated itself to the performance of music written for an ancient and little-known instrument, the baryton. A cross between the viol da gamba and lirone, with 10 resonating and plucked strings down the back of the instrument, the baryton gives the traditional string trio an entirely new dimension.

The Valencia Baryton Project was formed by colleagues from the opera of the Palau de les Arts and the Orchestre Nationale Montpellier with the vision of performing the nearly 160 works written by Franz Joseph Haydn as well as compositions by other composers, both modern and classical. At the heart of the ensemble is the traditional formation in trio - baryton, viola, and violoncello - for which Haydn wrote 123 works of outstanding beauty during his time as the court composer for the Prince Esterhazy of Austria.