Für Elise written in 1808.

“Don’t only practice your art, but force your way into its secrets,

for it and knowledge can raise men to the divine.”
Ludwig van Beethoven   Quotation found by Tyler Goldsborough

Listen to Celebrating the Music, and Humanity, of Beethoven

 Follow this link...  http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4230263

Morning Edition, December 16, 2004 · Today the world marks the anniversary of Ludwig Van Beethoven's birth in 1770. As musician and writer Miles Hoffman tells NPR's Renee Montagne, Beethoven, born in Bonn, Germany, is still revered for his forceful symphonies -- and admired for writing a share of them after losing his hearing.

In 1802, Beethoven, by then an acclaimed pianist, came to grips with his progressive hearing loss, which would become permanent. That loss ended his concert career in 1808 and by 1815, he had ceased to perform in public.

The effects of that illness would prove to be a boon for generations of music lovers, however, as Beethoven chose to focus on composing, creating music that remains among the most-performed today. Also, his growing deafness led Beethoven to push for louder and louder pianos, forcing new advances in the instrument's design.

Recognized as a genius in his own time, Beethoven was the first composer to rise to the status of a celebrity, passing beyond the limits of aristocratic approval to become a favorite of the public. Upon his death in 1827, thousands came to pay their respects.

Für Elise (1808)Notation & MIDI. Don't have Scorch? PDF  Guitar TAB

Für Elise  is a beginning piano piece which is performed by most young piano students.  Für Elise  was not the original title of the piece.  When the work was first published in 1867, it was done under the title Clavierstuck in A mull, which translates as "Keyboard piece in A minor."  However, Beethoven had autographed the piece in German with the title and dedication: "For Elise on April 27, 1810, as a remembrance of  L. v. Beethoven."  After its publication, people began to recognize the work as Für Elise  in accordance to its autograph.  Unfortunately, since its first publication, the autograph can not been found. Source

Style (Personal Synthesis)

Beethoven relied less on the classical three- or four-movement format, dominated by a dramatic first movement in sonata form, and more on the juxtaposition of movements (from two to seven) of widely differing style and character. In particular, he favored variation and fugal procedures in which the hidden implications of his themes emerge gradually.

Beethoven himself became a powerful symbol, the prototype of the modern artist-hero as opposed to the artist-craftsman of pre-revolutionary Europe. His fierce independence and his painfully achieved artistic triumph over personal adversity, especially in the dramatic works of the middle period, made him a model for those later composers such as Wagner who sought to teach or preach through art. source

Beethoven's method of working was to record ideas in numerous notebooks, which sometimes he would mull over for years, before eventually developing them into the building blocks of his compositions. So for example the seeds of the theme which eventually became the Ode to Joy, was originally conceived more than a decade earlier. This suggests a long gestation period and supreme attention to detail in order to depict in music the strength of his idealism. This creative process and the path he initiated was followed and extended by many other composers of the Romantic era, including composers as diverse as Brahms, Wagner and Mahler. Source                  return to top

Beethoven said, "I have always ardently desired to see France, but that was before France acquired an Emperor. Now I've lost my inclination." source

Napoleon crowns
              himself emperor


The French Revolution ended in 1799 when Napoleon Bonaparte entered Paris and was crowned First Consul at the age of thirty. A brilliant politician and a military genius, he took the title of emperor Napoleon I in 1804. After establishing a powerful central administration and a strong code of law, he started numerous military campaigns which almost gave him the control of the entire European continent.

First defeated in Russia in 1812 and then in Waterloo in 1815, he was replaced by Louis XVIII. http://www.france.com/culture/history/napoleons.html 

The Code Napoleon  1804 The old paternal authority within the family was restored while women’s rights were strictly limited - Napoleon once remarked that ‘women should stick to knitting’

"New schools are being opened, and inspectors have been appointed to see that the instruction does not degenerate into vain and sterile examinations. The lycees and the secondary schools are filling with youth eager for instruction. The polytechnic school is peopling our arsenals, ports, and factories with useful citizens. Prizes have been established in various branches of science, letters, and arts, and in the period of ten years fixed by his Majesty for the award of these prizes there can be no doubt that French genius will produce works of distinction." Napoleon The "youth" in mention did not include the poor or females.

The first public performance of Eroica took place in Vienna on 7 April 1805 with Beethoven himself conducting. The work did not please the public. Czerny later said someone in the gallery yelled out, "I'll give another kreuzer if the thing will but stop!"

Beethoven in 1804


A typical fiery episode occurred in September 1806, when the composer visited Prince Lichnowsky's Silesian estate.

Among the guests one evening happened to be a group of French officers. The suggestion was made that Beethoven play. Despite their urging, the composer adamantly refused. Someone, possibly the Prince himself, joked that he would be placed under house arrest if he did not play.

Provoked by the perceived insult, Beethoven stormed out into the night. He hurried back to Vienna. On arriving home, he took a bust of Lichnowsky and smashed it on the floor. He then dashed off a note to his patron: "Prince, what you are you are by accident of birth; what I am I am through myself. There have been and still will be thousands of princes; there is only one Beethoven."     Read more here...

or Wellington's Victory - MIDI PPT

Wellington's Victory, or the Battle of Vittoria for Piano and Two Cannons (from opus 91). 1813
Wellington's Victory, or the Battle of Vittoria op. 91, for Piano and Cannons, Hess 97 (1816). This is certainly the strangest of Beethoven's arrangements for piano, since it also calls for two cannon to be fired throughout the first (Battle) portion of the piece. In this midi, the English forces are on the right channel; the French are on the left. As the battle progresses, the English march toward and take the center, forcing the French further left and eventually completely off the soundstage. The piece was wildly popular in its time as anti-Napoleonic feeling increased in Europe. This "symphony" (as Beethoven referred to it in letters) is easily the most clearly descriptive piece Beethoven ever wrote. The transcription ends, as does the orchestral version, with a fugato treatment of "God Save the King." Published 1816 by Steiner in Vienna. We are tempted to describe this composition as the "original MIDI file." Maelzel had a brisk business selling Beethoven ear-trumpets and inventing the metronome, but one project did not come to much. That was the Panharmonikon, an automatic orchestra...
While no Panharmonikons are known to exist, this MIDI gives an approximation of how the composition must have sounded. The Panharmonikon apparently consisted solely of winds and percussion, namely at least: a piccolo, 4 flutes, 5 oboes, 5 clarinets, 2 bassoons, a contrabassoon, two horns, 4 trumpets, 4 trombones, timpani, triangle, Turkish cymbals, small and large drums, and an organ bass. The composition only consists of the second half of the familiar orchestral version, op. 91. The descriptive "Battle" portion of the composition does not exist in the original...
We have endeavored to make the MIDI file as mechanical as possible, in order to simulate the mechanical operations of the Panharmonikon, and have not used our ordinary humanizing algorithms on this composition...  source

A look at the making of Beethoven's Eroica.  by Ted Libbey    PPT

Symphony No. 5 in C minor, Opus 67 (1808)  

First Movement - Allegro con brio      

  PDQ Bach - Symphony No. 5

Moonlight by Ken Bushe


Click above to hear the first movement (Adagio sostenuto) from the Moonlight Sonata  youtube

Sonata No. 14, "Moonlight", Movement 1. by davva

John Lennon's inspiration for "Because"

Unfortunately, in his late twenties, Beethoven began to suffer from hearing loss.  By the age of 50, he had become completely deaf.  Throughout the years, he suffered from buzzing in his ears which grew to agitate his temper.  However, his hearing loss did not deter Beethoven from his composing.  He continues with his work and in fact, composed many of his greatest works after he had already grown almost completely deaf.  In 1824, after Beethoven had lost his hearing in its entirety, he conducted the first performance of his Ninth Symphony.  However, his hearing loss continued to agitate him until his death in 1827, although he did believe that when death did come for him, "I will hear in heaven." Source

A time of peace followed Beethoven's thirtieth birthday in 1800. Around this period, the composer was traumatized to realize that his deafness was worsening. In October 1802, while in Heiligenstadt, a village outside of Vienna, he wrote the so-called "Heiligenstadt Testament." In a long letter to his two brothers, never sent and discovered among his papers after his death, Beethoven described his despair and suicidal thoughts. The tortured mood is given more convincing expression in the Third ("Eroica") Symphony, a work inspired by and originally dedicated to Napoleon, then...the heroic embodiment of the anti-monarchist Revolution. 

Many of the medical complaints that ruined the composer's personal life were caused by a rare rheumatic disorder, sarcoidosis, which usually attacks almost every organ in the body, as recent research shows . According to Dr Palferman, a simple modern drug  would have cured the disease which led to Beethoven's deafness. If he had been given modern steroids and a liver transplant, Beethoven would have survived in good health for many years. He was completely deaf by the time he finished his Ninth Symphony. 

Today Music experts believe that the experience of acute pain played a vital role in Beethoven's greatest works. Sir Yehudi Menuhin, the great conductor, said: "Beethoven's inner hearing was absolutely incomparable. He might have been a happier man if his deafness had been treated , but he might possibly have written a different kind of music." Dr Palferman's report now challenges the widely held belief that alcoholism brought about his death. The cause of sarcoidosis, which affects about one in 20,000 people in Britain, is unknown.


Symphony No. 9 in C minor, Opus      MP3 excerpt              "Ode to Joy" is the official anthem of the European Union.

Fourth Movement - Ode to Joy     Melody moves mainly by steps.

A (half cadence) Praise to Joy the God descended, Daughter of Elysium

B (full cadence) Ray of mirth and rapture blended, Goddess, to thy shrine welcome.

C                         By thy magic is united what stern custom parted wide. All ...

D (full cadence) ... mankind are brothers plighted where thy gentle wings abide.

This is just wonderful, but will not be on the test. If you listen you will be enriched.

Used in The King's Speech
So very patient.

free Beethoven sheet music