In each round, the contestants will play a work by Joseph Haydn. The program will also include compositions by Franz Schubert, W.A. Mozart, F.M. Bartholdy, R. Schumann, J. Brahms, und L. v. Beethoven as well as 20th century works by composers of the Second Viennese School, Bela Bartok, D. Shostakovich, Ernst Krenek, Erich Urbanner and others.

The Joseph Haydn Competition wishes to support the creation of contemporary music. Therefore, contestants will perform a contemporary work resulting from a competition held for students at the Institute of Composition and Electro Acoustics at the University of Music and Performing Arts.