December 10th, 2017
of Ludwig Van Beethoven
Ludwig Van Beethoven is believed to have been born on
December 16th, 1770. There is no conformation on this date, yet in
the Catholic most baptisms were held a day after the child’s birth. So, many
experts have agreed since he was baptized December 17th his birthday
can very possibly be the 16th. He was born in Bonn, which in the
time was the capital city of the Electorate of Cologne. Beethoven’s name come
from his grandfather, who, himself were a musician. Ludwig was one of seven
children born to Johann and Maria Beethoven.
He was one of only three that survived into adulthood. He even had the
misfortune of watching some of his siblings actually pass away. Being that a
majority of the Beethoven family being in the music business it was almost
destined for Ludwig to become a musician. All three Beethoven children, that
survived were talented, yet none like him.
Through his early years, Ludwig, was a very sickly
individual. It even carried into his adult life as well. He suffered from many
diseases such as, chronic hepatitis, skin disorders, rheumatic fever, typhus
etc… He was also thought to have bipolar disorder. Beethoven had a strong
dislike for social rank as well as authority. It seems he was not big on being
told what to do. There were even instances where he would refuse to go on stage
until he had the attention of the entire audience.
Ludwig’s formal education came to an abrupt end when he
was just 11 years old. He had to actually drop out to help his father. The
family needed more income and he was another set of hands to help this
situation. School was a vital part of growing up for a child during this time
period, so this shows how noble he was in helping out his family. He never got
to learn basic math skills. He would have to add the numbers individually to be
able to figure out a multiplication problem. Yet, this still did not stop him
from pursuing greatness.
Now on to Ludwig’s musical education. It was evident at a
young age that he was a very talented young boy. His father even became the
first one to teach him, due to the fact that his father was a musician himself,
this would not be an issue for him to do. His father put him through hell
teaching him music. His father strived to make him perfect and it was very hard
for a five-year-old Ludwig to cope with at the time. It was so much for a child
his age to go through. His first performance came when he was just seven years
old. The performance was in the open in Cologne, in front of a large number of
people. As he progressed and got older, Ludwig had many more music teachers
such as Gilles Van Den Eeden, an organist. A couple others were Franz Rovantini
and Tobias Friedrich Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer was a family friend who helped teach
him the keyboard. Rovantini, a relative, taught him how to play the viola as
well as the violin. Each one of these teachers
is responsible for giving him a pretty solid base of knowledge to begin his
talented music journey. However, the new world renowned instructors helped open
up a whole new world that made all the difference. Christian Gottlob Neefe, an
organist from the court is one of the outstanding instructors that Beethoven
seeked knowledge from, on his pathway to greatness. This was the first time
that Ludwig was ever taught about music composition. Gottlob even helped recommend
so that he could get a job as an assistant to the organist. However, it wasn’t until
three years later that Beethoven was ever compensated for his work.
In 1783, Gottlob helped Beethoven create his very first composition.
He also aided in getting the piece published.
Even though it was a short simple piece it was a major accomplishment
for Beethoven. By this time Gottlob has realized the potential that Beethoven
has and has put everything he has into teaching him. Gottlob forced Beethoven
to study the work of many famous philosophers at the time. All of this gained
knowledge helped mold Beethoven into the person we all remember him being.
While Beethoven was working as assistant organist, he
composed three piano sonatas. These were dedicated to the Elector, Maximillian
Friedrich. The Elector notices the very talented Beethoven and encourages him
to continue his study of music.