Great composers and musicians throughout history have triumphed truth, overwhelming odds, and hardships. Many modern day musicians share their hardships as lyrics in songs. Mozart had the burden of being a child prodigy, and being treated like a "trained monkey." The modern day rapper Eminem had a terrible childhood with an abusive mother, who was also a drug addict. Ludwig van Beethoven's ability to overcome immense hardships helped him to produce some of the world's greatest music. Beethoven had to overcome physical abuse which could have triggered his declining ability to hear in his later years of life. In this paper, I intend to discuss Beethoven's hardships that molded him into one of the world's greatest musicians, and discuss the ninth symphony which the great composer wrote after total loss of his hearing.
"It is still unknown whether Beethoven was born on December 16 or 17 1770 as only the day of his baptism is recorded. "The house of his birth is not the "Hohe Haus" in Rheingasse, but the house in Bonngasse."(Nettl, 1956, pg.13) Beethoven was convinced that he was born in 1772; even though many friends showed him copies of baptismal certificates, he still believed that he was born in 1772. .
Like his father and his father before him, Beethoven found employment as a musician in the court of Electorate of Cologne. Ludwig van Beethoven, his grandfather, who he was named after and always had a portrait of when he moved around was a talented musician and also had an excellent bass voice. Johann van Beethoven, a man unlike his father, known for being a "lesser man" and also an alcoholic, began in the Electorate of Cologne as a boy soprano, and then became a tenor after adolescence. .
At a young age, Beethoven's father who was still a singer in the Electoral choir, could see that his son had been blessed with a gift. He saw this gift as a meal ticket and would cash it in just as Mozart's father had done years before.