Bagatelle No. 25 in A minor for solo piano commonly known as Für Elise (translated to For Elise in English) is one of Ludwig van Beethoven’s most popular compositions. Did you know that the piece was never written For Elise. An autographed manuscript reads “Für Therese am 27 zur Erinnerung and L v Bthvn” (“For Therese on the 27th April in remembrance of L. V Bthvn.”). Beethoven’s muse here is Therese Malfatti (1792–1851) with whom Beethoven was in love. So, we know that this beautiful piece was never Für Elise but Für Therese, sorry Elise. The wrong name can be attributed to the copyist who misread Beethoven’s untidy writing and gave his new piano piece the name “Für Elise.”
Therese was a friend and student of Beethoven’s to whom he proposed in 1810. Sadly, for Beethoven, she turned him down and went on to the Austrian nobleman and state official Wilhelm von Droßdik in 1816.
Ludwig van Beethoven was a young genius who showed his musical talents at an early age. He was taught by his father Johann van Beethoven and Christian Gottlob Neefe. Beethoven moved to Vienna in 1792 and began studying with Haydn, quickly becoming a virtuoso pianist. He lived in Vienna until his death. In the year 1800 his hearing began to falter and by the last decade of his life he was almost totally deaf. During this time, he gave up conducting and performing in public but continued to compose – many of his most admired works come from this period of his life.
Für Elise Remix (Electronica)
“Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn.” – Benjamin Franklin
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