Ludwig van Beethoven, probably the most well known name in music history to say the least, was brilliant. He practically redefined western classical music by transforming it into a powerful expression of philosophical thoughts and feelings. He was committed to the principle of Classicism-but not to every one of its manifestations, and certainly not to the mood behind it. (Listen 214). There was excitement in his music. A distinctiveness that divides it from Mozart and Hayden. He took music to such musical heights as to make a critic say, "All arts aspire to condition of music."(top-biography.com) Just few of his recognizable pieces include Fur Elise and Moonlight Sonata. From these pieces is how the majority of people today know the German musical genius. But a closer look will be observed. There is much to know about the life of the eccentric and almost mysteriously complex character.
Beethoven was born in 1770 in Bonn, Germany, to Johann and Maria Magdalena van Beethoven. His father was a musician and wanted Beethoven to become the next Mozart. His father taught him piano and violin. Some interesting found facts are that Beethoven's education was not continued beyond elementary school. He was practically illiterate in math. .
At age 17 Beethoven made his first trip to Vienna but he learned that his mother became deathly ill. He returned immediately. It was not until five years later in 1792 he returned to Vienna, this time making it his home. There he studied under another of Classical's greatest composers, Hayden, for about one year. In the relationship between the two there were troubles- maybe professional jealousy caused the problems. Beethoven turned to other teachers when Hayden went to London. He studied with .
Albrechtsberger, the best-known counterpoint teacher in Vienna. He then studied with Salieri who helped him in setting Italian words to music. Beethoven was soon acclaimed as a powerful virtuoso pianist, playing his own compositions at the palaces on the music-loving aristocracy of that city.