Search shop

Content/Details

Difficulty (Explanation)
Other titles of this difficulty
Rondo for Piano and Orchestra B flat major WoO 6
6 medium

About the Composer

Read more...

Ludwig van Beethoven

No composer has had as profound and sustained an influence on immediately following generations to the present day as Beethoven. His instrumental music, especially his symphonies, served as touchstones for symphonic composition throughout the nineteenth century. The extraordinarily high standard of his music and his relative independence as a freelance composer have led to his being characterized as the greatest composer of all time.

1770Baptized in Bonn on December 17, thus probably born on December 16, the son of Johann van Beethoven, a tenor in the court chapel of the prince-elector. First musical instruction from his father.
1778First public performance.
around 1780Musical training with the deputy court organist Christian Gottlob Neefe, who in 1783 presented him in Cramer’s “Magazin der Musik” as a second Mozart.
1782Acquaintance with the Breuning family, where his literary interest is aroused. First publication: Piano Variations in C minor on a March by Dressler, WoO 63.
1783Harpsichordist in the court chapel; 1784 assistant to the court organist.
1787Journey to Vienna. Here he very likely meets Mozart, who probably gives him some lessons. After a short while he must return home to his mother, who is ill with tuberculosis.
1792He travels a second time to Vienna, where he will remain until the end of his life. Count von Waldstein sends him on his way with the famous words: “With steady diligence you will receive Mozart’s spirit from Haydn's hands.” In Vienna he studies with Haydn, Albrechtsberger, Schuppanzigh, and Salieri. As a pupil of Joseph Haydn, he achieves extraordinary recognition among the Viennese nobility and receives financial support. Great demand for his compositions from publishing houses: chamber music and piano sonatas from the Bonn and early Viennese years are issued. His first works printed in Vienna (among them the piano sonatas, Op. 2) already bear the hallmark of his compositional style: a forward-advancing, spirited, process-related character.
1796Concert tours to Prague, Berlin, Leipzig, and Dresden, which cement his fame.
1798Piano Sonata in C Minor, “Pathétique,” Op. 13.
1798–1800String quartets, Op. 18.
1799/1800Symphony No. 1 in C major, Op. 21
1795/1800Piano Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15
1800–01Piano sonatas, Op. 27, “quasi una fantasia,” including the Moonlight Sonata, Op. 27 No. 2.
1801Composition of the Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 36 (until 1802). Publication of the Piano Concerto No. 2 in B-flat major, Op. 19.
1801/02Crisis brought on by incipient hearing loss, documented in the “Heiligenstadt Testament.” Thereafter he begins, by his own admission, a “New Path” in his compositions, reflected particularly in the piano sonatas, Op. 31 (including the Tempest Sonata); the piano variations, Op. 34 and 35; and the Symphony No. 3 in E-flat major, “Eroica,” Op. 55: they are characterized by enhanced structural development as well as by the use of Baroque techniques and models from other genres.
1803–10/12Frenzy of creativity; these years are dubbed Beethoven’s “heroic period”. Written during this phase are Symphonies Nos. 3 through 8 (Opp. 55, 60, 67, 68, 92, 93); Piano Concerti Nos. 3 through 5 (Opp. 37, 58, 73); the Violin Concerto in D major, Op. 61; the Triple Concerto, Op. 56; string quartets (the Razumovsky quartets, Op. 59; the Harp Quartet in E-flat major, Op. 74; the String Quartet in F minor, “serioso,” Op. 95); piano trios (among them the “Ghost” Trio, Op. 70); piano sonatas (including the Waldstein Sonata in C major, Op. 53; the Appassionata in F minor, Op. 57; and “Les Adieux” in E-flat major, Op. 81a); songs (including “An die Hoffnung,” Op. 32); the Mass in C major (Op. 86); and the opera “Fidelio” (Op. 72, first version 1804/5).
1808/09Beethoven rejects an offer to become the First Kapellmeister at the court in Kassel because his patrons, Archduke Rudolph, Prince Kinsky, and Prince Lobkowitz, provide him with a comparable yearly salary.
1811/12Travels to the spa at Teplitz, where he meets Goethe. In 1812, the letter to the “immortal beloved,” whose identity (Antonie Brentano or Josephine Deym) is still uncertain.
1814Piano Sonata in E minor, Op. 90; third version of the opera “Fidelio.” Extraordinarily successful concert with Symphonies Nos. 7 and 8. Still, financial crisis brought about by currency devaluation and the absence of yearly stipends from Kinsky and Lobkowitz.
1815Death of his brother Caspar Carl and the beginning of the years-long battle for the guardianship of his nephew Karl.
1816Song cycle “An die ferne Geliebte,” Op. 98; Piano Sonata in A major, Op. 101.
1817–18Hammerklavier Sonata in B-flat major, Op. 106.
1818Beethoven begins keeping conversation books due to increasing hearing loss.
1819–23Missa solemnis, Op. 123.
1819/23Diabelli Variations, Op. 120.
1820 Piano Sonata in E major, Op. 109, marks the beginning of his glorious late period, which is characterized by exceeding the boundaries of forms, by extreme pitch registers, advanced harmonies, and an increased penchant for contrapuntal forms such as fugue; standing in opposition to the propensity for esotericism in his chamber music is the monumentality of Symphony No. 9.
1821/22Piano Sonatas in A-flat major, Op. 110 (with fugue in the final movement), and C minor, Op. 111 (reduction to two movements).
1822–26String quartets, Opp. 127, 130, 131, 132, 135, as well as the Grosse Fuge, Op. 133, which originally formed the final movement of Op. 130.
1823/24Completion of the Symphony No. 9 in D minor, Op. 125, which for the first time in the history of the genre includes voice parts (Schiller’s “Ode to Joy”). It will become the most famous and most frequently played symphony of all time.
1827Death in Vienna on March 26.

© 2003, 2010 Philipp Reclam jun. GmbH & Co. KG, Stuttgart

About the Authors

Read more...

Hans-Werner Küthen (Editor)

Dr. Hans-Werner Küthen, born in 1938 in Cologne, studied in Bonn and Bologna and did his doctorate in 1985 at Bonn University. From 1968–2003 he worked as a research associate at the Beethoven-Archiv in Bonn. His most important publications include: Beethoven: Critical Edition of the volume “Ouverturen und Wellingtons Sieg”, as well as all of the Piano Concertos (3 volumes) in the New Complete Edition of Beethoven’s Works. He has written numerous essays and articles on Beethoven and his contemporaries, and since 1969 has given lectures both in Germany and abroad.

Rediscovered the “Kammerfassung des Vierten Klavierkonzerts” for Pianoforte and String Quintet (1807). Co-editor (with Oldrich Pulkert) of the compendium “Ludwig van Beethoven im Herzen Europas. Leben und Nachleben in den böhmischen Ländern”, Prague 2000. Editor of the symposium report “Beethoven und die Rezeption der Alten Musik. Die hohe Schule der Überlieferung”, Bonn 2002. Lexical entries on Beethoven and Lodovico Viadana. “Quaerendo invenietis. Die Exegese eines Beethoven-Briefes an Haslinger vom 5. September 1823”, in: Musik – Edition – Interpretation. Gedenkschrift Günter Henle, ed. by Martin Bente, Munich 1980.

Read more...

Johannes Umbreit (Piano reduction)

Prof. Johannes Umbreit studied the piano at the Musikhochschule in Munich. From 1987 onwards he was a regular accompanist at courses given by Wolfgang Schneiderhan, Thomas Brandis, Ljerko Spiller, Igor Ozim, Olga Woitowa, Ernő Sebestyén, Walter Nothas, F. Andrejevsky, Denis Zsigmondy and Zakhar Bron amongst others. He has appeared in numerous radio and TV broadcasts and plays chamber music with members of the Bavarian State Orchestra, the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra and the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra.

He is on the jury of different international competitions and has been invited to several international music festivals. Umbreit was a teacher for almost ten years at the Musikhochschule in Munich and at the same time a lecturer for chamber music and piano accompaniment at the Richard Strauss Conservatory. Since 2008 he has been a lecturer at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München. As the long-serving managing director of the Richard-Strauss-Gesellschaft, he was made an honorary member of the board in 2009. In May 2011, the Bavarian Minister of Culture appointed Johannes Umbreit an honorary professor of the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München on the suggestion of its academic senate.

Andreas Groethuysen (Fingering)

Prof. Andreas Groethuysen, born in 1956 in Munich, studied music with Ludwig Hoffmann in Munich and, on a scholarship from the “Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes”, with Peter Feuchtwanger in London.

After several years as a soloist, Groethuysen formed a piano duo with Yaara Tal, which has now become the focus of his artistic work. The duo regularly performs in many European countries, in Israel, China, North and South America. In exclusive cooperation with SONY CLASSICAL the internationally acclaimed piano duo has released a great many CDs – 28 to date – almost all of which have been awarded prizes.

Deze nieuwe urtext vormt daarmee een belangrijk puzzelstukje dat ons meer inzicht kan geven in Beethoven's compositorische ontwikkeling.

Pianowereld, 2013

recommendations

RECOMMENDATIONS

Ludwig van Beethoven Piano Concerto no. 2 B flat major op. 19
Piano reduction, Urtext Edition, paperbound
HN 434

Variants from $26.85
$31.95 available

Variants from $26.85
$31.95 available
Further editions of this title
Ludwig van Beethoven Piano Concerto no. 5 E flat major op. 73
Piano reduction, Urtext Edition, paperbound
HN 637

Variants from $30.21
$35.95 available

Variants from $30.21
$35.95 available
Further editions of this title
Ludwig van Beethoven Piano Concerto no. 3 c minor op. 37
Piano reduction, Urtext Edition, paperbound
HN 435

Variants from $29.37
$34.95 available

Variants from $29.37
$34.95 available
Further editions of this title