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The Life of Ludwing Van Beethoven

The Life of Ludwing Van Beethoven

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Published by: albaro4ever on Mar 06, 2010
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 The life of Ludwing VanBeethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was baptised on December 17th1770 at Bonn. His family originated from Brabant, inBelgium. His father was musician at the Court of Bonn, witha definite weakness for drink. His mother was alwaysdescribed as a gentle, retiring woman, with a warm heart.Beethoven referred to her as his "best friend". TheBeethoven family consisted of seven children, but only thethree boys survived, of whom Beethoven was the eldest.find on this site:the lives of Beethoven's ancestorsAt an early age, Beethoven took an interest in music, andhis father taught him day and night, on returning to thehouse from music practice or the tavern. Without doubt,the child was gifted, and his father Johann envisagedcreating a new Mozart, a child prodigy.On March 26
th
1778, at the age of 7 1/2, Beethoven gavehis first know public performance, at Cologne. His fatherannounced that he was 6 years old. Because of this,Beethoven always thought that he was younger than heactually was. Even much later, when he received a copy of his baptism certificate, he thought that it belonged to hisbrother Ludwig Maria, who was born two years before him,and died as a child.But the musical and teaching talents of Johann werelimited. Soon Ludwig learned music, notably the organ andcomposition by renowned musicians, such as GottlobNeefe. Neefe recognised the how extraordinarily talentedBeethoven was. As well as teaching him music, he made
 
the works of philosophers, ancient and modern, known toBeethoven.find on this siteBeethoven's music teachersIn 1782, before the age of 12, Beethoven published his firstwork: 9 variations, in C Minor, for Piano, on a march byErnst Christoph Dressler (WoO 63). And the following year,in 1783, Neefe wrote in the "Magazine of Music", about hisstudent: "If he continues like this he will be, without doubt,the new Mozart".In June 1784, on Neefe's recommendations, Ludwig wasappointed organist of the court of Maximilian Franz, Electorof Cologne. He was 14. This post enabled him to frequentnew circles, other than those of his father and friends of hisfamily. Here he met people who were to remain friends forthe rest of his life: The Ries family, the von Breuning familyand the charming Eleonore, Karl Amenda, the violinist,Franz Gerhard Wegeler, a doctor, and a dear friend whoalso went to Vienna, etc.At home, little by little, Ludwig replaced his father.Financially first of all, because Johann, often under theinfluence of drink, was less and less capable of keeping uphis role at the court. The young Beethoven felt responsiblefor his two younger brothers, an idea he kept for the rest of his life, sometimes to the extent of being excessive.Prince Maximilian Franz was also aware of Beethoven's gift,and so he sent Beethoven to Vienna, in 1787, to meetMozart and to further his musical education. Vienna was,after all, the beacon city in terms of culture and music. There exist only texts of disputable authenticity on thesubject of this meeting between Mozart and Beethoven.Mozart is thought to have said "Don't forget his name - youwill hear it spoken often."!But a letter called Beethoven back to Bonn: his mother was
 
dying. The only person in his family with whom he haddeveloped a strong and loving relationship passed away on July 17th 1787.Five years later, in 1792, Beethoven went back to Vienna,benefiting from another grant, for two years, by the PrinceElector, again to pursue his musical education. He neverwent back to the town of his birth. His friend Waldsteinwrote to him: "You shall receive Mozart's spirit fromHaydn's hands"...At Vienna, the young musician took lessons with Haydn,then with Albrechtsberger and Salieri. He captured theattention of, and astonished, Vienna, with his virtuosity andhis improvisations on piano. In 1794, Beethoven composedhis opus 1, three trios for piano. The following year,Beethoven made his first public performance at Vienna (an"Academy") whereby each musician was to play his ownwork. Then followed a tour: Prague, Dresden, Leipzig andBerlin before leaving for a concert in Budapest.listen to on this siteBeethoven's worksBeethoven made numerous acquaintances at Vienna.Everybody in the musical and aristocratic world admiredthe young composer. These music-lovers were Beethoven'sgreatest supporters. He became angry regularly with oneor another of them, often making honourable amends soonafterwards. His talent excused his excessive, impulsivebehaviour.In 1800, Beethoven organised a new concert at Viennaincluding, notably, the presentation of his first symphony.Although today we find this work classical, and close to theworks of Mozart and Haydn, at the time certain listenersfound the symphony strange, overly extravagant, and evenrisqué. This genius, Beethoven, who was still a young, new

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