Part 3: The Heroic Years. 1803 - 1811
Review Part 2: Taking Vienna by Storm. 1792 - 1803
Establish the beginning of the fourth movement of the 3rd Symphony and then take under
The Life and Music of Ludwig van Beethoven by Shaun MacLoughlin. Part 3. The Heroic Years.
Ferdinand Ries, Beethoven's assistant, reported, of Beethoven's
3rd Symphony, The Eroica
In this symphony Beethoven had Bonaparte in his mind. He esteemed him greatly and likened him to the greatest Roman consuls. I was the first to bring him intelligence that Buonaparte had proclaimed himself emperor, whereupon he flew into a rage.
Is he then too nothing more than an ordinary human being? Now he, too, will trample on all the rights of man and indulge only his ambition. He will exalt himself above all others, become a tyrant!
Napoleon, Emperor of France by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres
He went to the table, took hold of the title page by the top, tore it in two and threw it on the floor. The first page was rewritten and only then did the symphony receive the title
Bring up the 3rd Symphony and take under the next two speeches
After the first performance of the symphony, Haydn famously declared:
Music will never be the same again.
Beethoven with lyre by Willibrord Joseph Mahler
Bring up the 3rd Symphony and play out as appropriate
He spent the summer of 1804 at the village of Döbling outside Vienna. Much of his inspiration came during long walks in the countryside. He was often accompanied by Ries, who describes one long walk.
We went so far astray that we did not get to Döbling until nearly 8 o'clock. He had been all the time humming and sometimes howling, always up and down , without singing any definite notes.
In answer to my question what it was, he said.
A theme for the last movement of the sonata has occurred to me.
Establish Piano Sonata 23 - the Appassionata and take under
When we entered the room he ran to the pianoforte without taking off his hat. I took a seat in the corner and he soon forgot all about me. Now he stormed for at least an hour with beautiful finale of the sonata.
Beethoven believed the Appassionata, as it was called, to be the greatest of his piano sonatas.
Bring up Piano Sonata 23 - the Appassionata and and weave under the next two speeches
Ferdinand Ries became indispensable to Beethoven, helping him with the practicalities of composition, dealing with publishers, and generally looking after him as his hearing declined.
After their stay in Döbling in 1804, he acquired new lodgings for Beethoven on the top floor of Baron Pasqualati's House in Vienna. It had a beautiful view over distant mountains, and although Beethoven moved many times, he often returned to it. He was to compose many of his greatest works there. Reis described Beethoven's mood swings.
He was a thoroughly good and kind man, on whom his mood and impetuousness played shabby tricks. He was often extremely violent. One day at the Swan Inn the waiter brought him the wrong dish. Scarcely had Beethoven spoken a few words about the matter, which the waiter answered in a manner not altogether modest, when Beethoven seized the dish and threw it at the waiter's head. The poor fellow had an armful of dishes; the gravy ran down his face. He and Beethoven screamed and vituperated, while all the other guests roared with laughter. Finally Beethoven himself was overcome by the comedy of the situation. It was a picture worthy of Hogarth.
Bring up Piano Sonata 23 - the Appassionata and and play out as appropriate.
At about this time Beethoven taught piano to the 17 year-old, Archduke Rudolph, the youngest son of Emperor Leopold II and younger brother of Emperor Franz. He was to become Beethoven's most generous patron.
Establish the second movement of the Triple Concerto for violin, Cello and Piano and play under
Beethoven composed his
Triple Concerto for Violin, Cello and Piano
for his teenage pupil. Possibly his intention was to create a showy but relatively easy piano part that would be backed up by two more mature and skilled soloists.
Bring up the Triple Concerto for Violin, Cello and Piano again. Then weave under the following
In 1804 the Countess Josephine Deym, who had been Beethoven's pupil back in 1799, was widowed. She was left with four children. Her relationship with Beethoven intensified. In several fragmentary letters, he unburdened himself to her.
Only beloved, why is there no language which can express what is far above mere regard? Of long duration may our love become. For it is so noble - so firmly founded upon our mutual friendship. You make me hope that your heart will long beat for me. I believe that music is more at my command than words. I would attain to you only in music..
Then disaster struck. The French Revolutionary army, with Napoleon at its head entered Vienna and occupied the city.
Reis was liable for conscription and had to return to Bonn, while Josephine fled the city with her children and wintered in Budapest.
She wrote to Beethoven explaining that she would not agree to consummate their relationship.
Napoleon receives the keys of Vienna
Even before I knew you, your music made me enthusiastic for you - the goodness of your character increased it. That I cannot satisfy this sensual love makes you angry with me, but I would have to violate holy bonds, if I gave heed to your longings.
Do not tear my heart apart - do not try to persuade me further. I love you inexpressibly as one gentle soul does another. I am not receptive to other forms of love at present.
Bring up the Triple Concerto for Violin, Cello and Piano and play out.
So again Beethoven devoted himself to composition and during the years 1805 to 1808 he was immensely prolific.
Establish the first movement of the Fifth Symphony and play under
It is said the Beethoven described the opening notes of his most famous
Fate knocking on your door.
The symphony had a long gestation. The first sketches date from 1804 following the completion of the
. He repeatedly interrupted his work on the Fifth to prepare other compositions, including the first version of his opera
Appassionata piano sonata, the three Razumovsky string quartets, the Violin Concerto, the Fourth Piano Concerto, the Fourth Symphony,
Mass in C
. Hoffman was to write of it.
Radiant beams shoot through the deep night of this region, and we become aware of gigantic shadows which, rocking back and forth, close in on us and destroy all within us except the pain of endless longing — a longing in which every pleasure that rose up amid jubilant tones sinks and succumbs.
Bring up the first movement of the Fifth Symphony and play under again
Only through this pain, which, while consuming but not destroying love, hope, and joy, tries to burst our breasts with a full-voiced general cry from all the passions, do we live on and are captivated beholders of the spirits.
Bring up the first movement of the Fifth Symphony and play under again
How this wonderful composition, in a climax that climbs on and on, leads the listener imperiously forward into the spirit world of the infinite!
Bring up the first movement of the Fifth Symphony and play out
In 1807 Napoleon appointed his youngest brother, Jerome as King of Westphalia at Cassell.
He offered the post of Kapellmeister to Beethoven.
Alexander Thayer, Beethoven's 19th century, thorough, but opinionated biographer, writes:
What could have induced this half-educated, frivolous, prodigal and effeminate young sybarite to court the composer, most distinguished for his masculinity and manly independence of art, is one of those small mysteries that seem imprenetable
Jerome Bonaparte by François Gérard
Beethoven was tempted to accept the post, but Princes Kinsky and Lobkowitz and Archduke Rudolph together bestowed an annuity of 4000 florins on him and he was persuaded to remain in Vienna.
Another aristocrat, who influenced Beethoven to remain in Vienna, was Count Andrey Razumovsky, the Russian Ambassador, who installed a string quartet in his magnificent palace, overlooking the Danube. He himself played the second violin. He commissioned the three Rasumovsky Quartets from Beethoven, who also dedicated both the 5th and 6th symphonies to him.
Count Andrey Razumovsky
Establish the second movement of the 6th Symphony and weave through the following
Beethoven made it very clear that nature inspired this work. The second movement of the
6th or Pastoral Symphony
was called by Beethoven
the Scene by the Brook
How glad I am to be able to roam in wood and thicket, among the trees and flowers and rocks. No one can love the country as I do.
My bad hearing does not trouble me here. In the country, every tree seems to speak to me, saying ‘Holy! Holy!’ In the woods, there is enchantment which expresses all things.
Years later on a bright sunny day in April, he and Anton Schindler, the violinist and Beethoven's first major biographer, went for a country walk.
Passing through the pleasant meadow-valley between Heiligenstadt and Grinzing, which is traversed by a pleasant murmuring brook, which hurries down from a nearby mountain, and is bordered with high elms, Beethoven repeatedly stopped and let his his glances roam, full of happiness.
Then seating himself on the turf, he asked me whether there were any yellowhammers to be heard in the trees around us. But all was still.
Then he said:
Here I composed the
Scene by the Brook
and the yellowhammers up there, the quails, nightingales and cuckoos round about, composed it with me.
Beethoven by the brook
Bring up the 6th Symphony and play out.
were premiered at the Theater an der Wien in 1808.
This was part of a marathon concert, which saw Beethoven's last appearance as a soloist with orchestra.
As well as the premieres of the
, Beethoven dedicated his
4th Piano Concerto
to his friend, student, and patron, the Archduke Rudolph.
Theater an der Wien
Establish 4th Piano Concerto and take under
A review in the May 1809 edition of the Allgemeine Musikalische Zeitung stated:
This concerto is the most admirable, singular, artistic and complex Beethoven concerto ever.
However, after its first performance, the piece was neglected until 1836, when it was revived by Mendelssohn. Liszt described the second movement as "Orpheus taming the wild beasts".
Bring up 4th Piano Concerto and take under
After the Treaty of Pressburg in 1805 French troops had withdrawn from Austria; but they went to war again in 1809. Archduke Maximillian defended Vienna with a garrison of 16,000 troops and 1,000 students. Thus Beethoven found himself in a beleaguered city. When the French shelled the city on the 11th May, every canon shot was liable to plunge into his windows. Reis described how:
He spent the greater part of the time in a cellar in the house of his brother, Caspar, where he covered his ears with pillows, so as not to hear the canons. At half past two on the 12th the white flag was sent up as capitulation to the outposts of the enemy.
Bring up 4th Piano Concerto and play out
For Beethoven the most punishing ordeal of the occupation was being deprived of spending the summer in the countryside. One day on seeing a French officer passing a coffee house, he shook his fist and declaimed:
Napoleon's room at Schoenbrunn Palace
If I, as a general, knew as much about strategy as I the composer know about counterpoint, I'd give you something to do!
Establish piano solo Fur Elise and weave under:
In the spring of 1809, the forty-year-old composer had fallen in love with a student – the beautiful eighteen-year-old Therese Malfatti. He considered the esteem she held for him to be love. There is a story that in the spring of 1810 he was invited to a party thrown by Therese’s father. Beethoven wanted to propose marriage to her on that night after playing a bagatelle he had composed especially for her. Unfortunately he got so drunk that he was unable to play or to propose to anyone. All he could do is write Therese’s name on the title page of the bagatelle. He wrote :
, but in almost illegible writing. When the manuscript was found on Therese’s death it was published, but since the writing was illegible it became
Actually Elise could mean Sweetheart. In 1816 Therese married the Austrian nobleman, Wilhelm von Drossdik.
Bring up and then fade Fur Elise .:
However women continued to be fascinated by Beethoven, particularly Bettina Brentano, the daughter of an Italian merchant. She was once described as 'a one-woman literary movement'. She once wrote to her brother:
My soul is a passionate dancer; she dances to hidden music, which only I can hear... Whatever police the world may prescribe to rule the soul, I refuse to obey them..
Bring up the overture to Egmont and then weave under
She fell in love with Goethe, but also stalked Beethoven.
Music to her was, like nature, a revelation beyond language and intellect, and she sang beautifully.
In a letter to Goethe, she quoted Beethoven's ecstatic vision of his art; though it is possible these are her words, not his:
Bettina Brentano von Arnim
When I open my eyes I must sigh, for what I see is contrary to my religion, and I must despise the world that does not know that music is a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy. It is the wine which inspires one to new generative processes, and I am the Bacchus who presses out this glorious wine for humankind... Those who understand my music will be freed by it from all the miseries the others drag about with them.
In 1810 she was engaged to the poet Ludwig von Arnim. Beethoven wrote to her:
May all the happiness, with which marriage blesses the married, flow upon you and your husband.
I am about to write to Goethe concerning Egmont for which I have composed music, out of love for his poems.
Bring up the overture to Egmont again and then weave under again.
Count Egmont, the subject of Goethe's play, was a sixteenth century Dutch nobleman. At a time when the French Empire had extended its domination over most of Europe, Beethoven celebrated the heroic sacrifice of a man, condemned to death by the Spanish for taking a stand against oppression.
Goethe declared that Beethoven had expressed his intentions with "a remarkable genius". The Overture would later become an unofficial anthem of the 1956 Hungarian revolution.
Bring up the overture to Egmont again and play out.
Count Lamoral van Egmont
In March of 1811 Beethoven completed his Archduke Trio, dedicated Archduke Rudolph. It was to be the his last performance as a pianist, before the onset of complete deafness in 1814.
Introduce the Archduke trio
He spent the summer of 1811 at the spa of Teplitz, where a new friend, Karl von Ense, wrote of him:
I found this reputedly savage and unsociable man to be the most magnificent artist with a heart of gold, a glorious spirit and a friendly disposition. He lives only for his art and no earthly passion can still the music within him. On his walks he seeks out distant places along lonely paths between the mountains and through the forests, finding peace in the contemplation of nature, thinking in musical tone. I could only tell you how beautiful, moving, devout and serious, as if he had been kissed by God, this man appeared to us as he played on the pianoforte his newest compositions, pure creations granted by God.
The following summer in Teplitz he was to write his famous letter to the immortal beloved.
Bring up and play out the Archduke trio
Part 4: The Last Years 1812 - 1827
Music of the Great composers
The Flying Palaces of Angkor
Ⓒ 2023 learnetd.com | All Rights Reserved.