Ludwig Van Beethoven

Ludwig Van Beethoven
Ludwig Van Beethoven was born in Bonn, and was baptized on the 17th December 1770, and he was a German composer of the 18th century. He studied first wth his father, Johann, a singer and instrumentalist, but mainly with C.G. Neefe, a court organist. At 11 and a half, he was able to ?stand in? for Neefe; at 12 he?d had some music published. In 1787, he went to Vienna, but quickly returned when he heard that his mother was dying. Five years later he went back to Vienna, where he settled. Beethoven?s public debut was in 1795; about the same time his first important publications appeared, where he performed three piano trios and three piano sonatas. As a pianist, it was reported, he had ?fire, brilliance and fantasy as well as depth and feeling?. Beethoven was usually at his best when performing his piano sonatas; the Pathetique from 1799, and the Moonlight (?Sonata quasi una fantasia?) from 1801. These years also saw the composition of his first three piano concertos, his first two symphonies and a set of six string quartets.
1802, however, was a year of crisis for Beethoven, as he began to realize that his hearing problem, which he had noticed for quite some time, was incurable and bound to worsen. That autumn, at a village outside Vienna called Heiligenstadt, he wrote a document, fairly similar to a will, and addressed it to his brothers. The document described his bitter unhappiness, and his style of writing suggested that he thought his death was near. But Beethoven overcame this unhappines with sheer determination and entered a new creative phase, generally called his ?middle period?. Fidelio, which was unsuccessful at its premiere, was altered twice by Beethoven and his writers and became successful in its final version in 1814. This piece of music has a story not only of freedom, justice and heroism, but also of married love, and in the character of the heroine Leonore, Beethoven?s patronizing, idealized image of women is shown. He did not find it in real life, he fell in love several times. Usually this would be with noble pupils (some of them married), and each time he was either rejected or saw that the woman did not live up to what he wanted. In 1812, however, he wrote a passionate love letter to an ?Eternally Beloved? (probably Antonie Brentano, a Viennese married to a Frankfurt businessman), but it is most likely that the letter was never sent. With his powerful ?middle period? works, including the Pastoral Symphony, which showed his feelings about how much he loved the countryside, and the Violin Concerto, as well as more chamber works and piano sonatas (such as the Waldstein and the Appassionata) Beethoven became known as the greatest composer of his time. His piano-playing career had finished in 1808 (a charity appearance in 1814 was a disaster because of his deafness). That year he had considered leaving Vienna for a secure post in Germany, but three Viennese noblemen had banded together to provide him with a steady income and he remained there. After the year 1812, Beethoven hardly did any composing at all. He seemed to have been seriously depressed, by his deafness and by the results of his bad composing due to his deafness. He was also depressed because of the fact that he still had not married, and because of some legal actions he had to become a part of due to the custody case of his late brother?s son. But he came out of these trials to write some of his deepest and most serious music, which surely reflects something of what he had been through. There are seven piano sonatas in this, his ?late period?, including the turbulent Hammerklavier, with it?s very dynamic writing. Musical taste in Vienna had changed during the first decades of the 19th century; the public became mainly interested in light Italian opera (especially Rossini) and easygoing chamber music. Despite all of this, the Vienneses were very much aware of Beethoven?s greatness: they applauded the Choral Symphony even though they found it difficult to understand. His reputation went far beyond Vienna: the late Mass was first heard in St. Petersburg, and the initial compensation that produced the Choral Symphony had come from the Philharmonic Society of London. Early in 1827, when Beethoven died, 10, 000 people are said to have attended the funeral. He had become a public figure, as no composer had done before.

Ludwig Van Beethoven 9.8 of 10 on the basis of 946 Review.