Ludwig van Beethoven
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1770-12-17
https://musicbrainz.org/artist/1f9df192-a621-4f54-8850-2c5373b7eac9
Ludwig van Beethoven

Ludwig van Beethoven Biography (BBC)

The popular image of Beethoven as a morose individual who shunned society is only partly true. He did have a serious outlook on life, and in later years he had difficulty mixing with people because of his deafness, which emerged in his late twenties and gradually increased thereafter till his death. Yet he loved company, and had a ready wit. His letters contain many puns, and it was he who introduced the scherzo (literally, ‘joke’) into the symphony when he used one in his Symphony No. 2 instead of the customary minuet.

This Second Symphony already goes well beyond the models of Haydn and Mozart, the two chief influences on his style. Building on their example Beethoven continually strove to stretch the bounds of music to new limits, whether in his seven surviving concertos, 16 string quartets, 35 piano sonatas (including three very early ones) or other works.

Each of his nine symphonies (and an incipient tenth) is completely different from any previous one, and he showed similar originality in every major genre of the time, from his only opera Fidelio and his mighty Missa solemnis to his numerous settings of folk songs, which he treated in an entirely novel way. He achieved his goal through a combination of natural genius and sheer hard work: every one of his major compositions is the result of painstaking refinement, evident in the many thousands of pages of musical sketches that he wrote.

It is not always realised, however, that Beethoven was extraordinary in other ways too. Having no wife or family of his own, he spent enormous energy on helping his nephew, and he was deeply religious. Indeed his goodness and kindness were so evident to his contemporaries that at least three of them independently asserted that he was even greater as a human being than as a musician. Considering that many regard him as the greatest composer in history, such praise is astonishing.

Beethoven also responded strikingly to political upheavals – the French Revolution and the ensuing Napoleonic wars. Although no political activist, he made his hatred of tyranny very plain in works such as Fidelio and his music for Goethe’s play Egmont.

Yet it is the quality of his music that has ensured his lasting reputation. Although its novelty initially puzzled some of his contemporaries, repeated hearings and study have shown that it is based on firm foundations. Its combination of beauty and unpredictability, extreme emotional depth and intellectual rigour, across so many genres, is unsurpassed and probably always will be.

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Ludwig van Beethoven Tracks

Ludwig van Beethoven
6 National Airs with Variations, Op. 105
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6 National Airs with Variations, Op. 105

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Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Sonata no 24 in F sharp major, Op 78
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Piano Sonata no 24 in F sharp major, Op 78
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet in C sharp minor, Op 131
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String Quartet in C sharp minor, Op 131
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Op. 58 (end)
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Piano Concerto No. 4 in G Op. 58 (end)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No 8 in F major, Op 93 (4th mvt)
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Symphony No 8 in F major, Op 93 (4th mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Violin Sonata in E flat major, Op 12 No 3 (2nd mvt)
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Violin Sonata in E flat major, Op 12 No 3 (2nd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony no.2 in D major - IV Allegro Molto
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Symphony no.2 in D major - IV Allegro Molto
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Sonata in C minor, Op 13, 'Pathétique' (3rd mvt)
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Piano Sonata in C minor, Op 13, 'Pathétique' (3rd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Bagatelle in B minor, Opus 126 No 4
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Bagatelle in B minor, Opus 126 No 4
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Concerto no. 1 in C major
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Piano Concerto no. 1 in C major
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony no. 4 in B flat major Op.60
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Symphony no. 4 in B flat major Op.60
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet in E flat major, Op 74 (Harp)
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String Quartet in E flat major, Op 74 (Harp)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No 7 in A major, Op 92 (2nd mvt)
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Symphony No 7 in A major, Op 92 (2nd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet No 7 in F Major, Op 59 No 1, 'Razumovsky' (1st mvt)
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String Quartet No 7 in F Major, Op 59 No 1, 'Razumovsky' (1st mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet in G major, Op 18 no 2
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String Quartet in G major, Op 18 no 2
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No 7 in A major (Op 92) 4th mvt
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Symphony No 7 in A major (Op 92) 4th mvt
Ludwig van Beethoven
13 Variations on 'Es war einmal ein alter Mann' for piano (WoO.66) in A major
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13 Variations on 'Es war einmal ein alter Mann' for piano (WoO.66) in A major
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet in C minor Op 18 No 4
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String Quartet in C minor Op 18 No 4
Ludwig van Beethoven
Fidelio (Overture)
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Fidelio (Overture)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Welten singen...Preiset ihn (Christ on the Mount of Olives)
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Welten singen...Preiset ihn (Christ on the Mount of Olives)

Welten singen...Preiset ihn (Christ on the Mount of Olives)

Choir
Philharmonischer Chor der Stadt Bonn
Chor des Theater Bonn
Orchestra
Orchester der Beethovenhalle
Conductor
Volker Wangenheim
Last played on
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Sonata in A flat, Op.110
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Piano Sonata in A flat, Op.110
Ludwig van Beethoven
Beethoven Choral Fantasy, Op.80
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Beethoven Choral Fantasy, Op.80
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet No 9 in C Op 59'3
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String Quartet No 9 in C Op 59'3
Ludwig van Beethoven
Violin Concerto in D major, op. 61
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Violin Concerto in D major, op. 61
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No 9 in D minor, Op 125, 'Choral' (2nd mvt)
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Symphony No 9 in D minor, Op 125, 'Choral' (2nd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Cello Sonata No.5 in D major Op.102'2, iii Allegro fugato (last movement)
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Cello Sonata No.5 in D major Op.102'2, iii Allegro fugato (last movement)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Cello sonata no.4 in C major Op.102'1; i.Andante: Allegro vivace
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Cello sonata no.4 in C major Op.102'1; i.Andante: Allegro vivace
Ludwig van Beethoven
The Consecration of the House, Op 124
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The Consecration of the House, Op 124
Ludwig van Beethoven
Finale (String Quartet in F minor)
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Finale (String Quartet in F minor)
Ludwig van Beethoven
The Creatures of Prometheus, Op 43 (Overture)
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The Creatures of Prometheus, Op 43 (Overture)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Adagio in E flat (WoO.43 No.2) for mandolin and piano
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Adagio in E flat (WoO.43 No.2) for mandolin and piano
Ludwig van Beethoven
12 Variations on 'Ein Madchen oder Weibchen' for cello and piano (Op.66)
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12 Variations on 'Ein Madchen oder Weibchen' for cello and piano (Op.66)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Seven Variations on 'Bei Männern, welche Liebe fühlen', WoO 46
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Seven Variations on 'Bei Männern, welche Liebe fühlen', WoO 46
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Sonata no 5 in C minor, Op 10 no 1
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Piano Sonata no 5 in C minor, Op 10 no 1
Ludwig van Beethoven
8 Variations on Mozart's 'La ci darem la mano'
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8 Variations on Mozart's 'La ci darem la mano'
Ludwig van Beethoven
Violin Sonata no 6 in A major, Op 30 no 1
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Violin Sonata no 6 in A major, Op 30 no 1
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No.6 (Pastorale) (excerpt)
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Symphony No.6 (Pastorale) (excerpt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
String Quartet in C minor, Op 18 No 4 (2nd mvt)
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String Quartet in C minor, Op 18 No 4 (2nd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony no. 9 in D minor Op.125 (Choral)
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Symphony no. 9 in D minor Op.125 (Choral)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Sonata No.8 in C minor, Op.13 'Pathétique': I. Grave...
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Piano Sonata No.8 in C minor, Op.13 'Pathétique': I. Grave...
Ludwig van Beethoven
Concerto for piano and orchestra no. 4 (Op.58) in G major
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Concerto for piano and orchestra no. 4 (Op.58) in G major
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony No.6 in F major, 'Pastoral': I. Allegro ma non troppo
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Symphony No.6 in F major, 'Pastoral': I. Allegro ma non troppo
Ludwig van Beethoven
Piano Concerto No 3 in C minor, Op 37 (3rd mvt)
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Piano Concerto No 3 in C minor, Op 37 (3rd mvt)
Ludwig van Beethoven
Symphony no 4 in B flat major, Op 60
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Symphony no 4 in B flat major, Op 60

Symphony no 4 in B flat major, Op 60

Orchestra
Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Katowice
Ludwig van Beethoven
Sonata no. 31 in A flat major Op.110 for piano; iii) Adagio ma non troppo - Fuga: allegro ma non troppo
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Sonata no. 31 in A flat major Op.110 for piano; iii) Adagio ma non troppo - Fuga: allegro ma non troppo
Ludwig van Beethoven
Sonata no. 30 in E major Op.109 for piano; i) Vivace, ma non
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Sonata no. 30 in E major Op.109 for piano; i) Vivace, ma non
Ludwig van Beethoven
Quartet in F major Op.135 for strings; iii) Lento assai e cantante
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Quartet in F major Op.135 for strings; iii) Lento assai e cantante
Ludwig van Beethoven
Bagatelle in C minor, WoO52
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Bagatelle in C minor, WoO52
Ludwig van Beethoven
Violin Sonata in A major, Op 47 (Kreutzer)
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Violin Sonata in A major, Op 47 (Kreutzer)

Violin Sonata in A major, Op 47 (Kreutzer)

Performer
Igor Oistrach
Igor Chernishov
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