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By Philippe A. Autexier

A biography of the nice composer retraces Beethoven's remarkable lifestyles, from his early years as a toddler prodigy, via his surprising deafness at age twenty-six and preliminary contemplation of suicide, to his inventive accomplishments past. unique.

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In contrast to action, Charles Baudelaire the gesture overcomes external shackles. pure and absolute, like a Kantian imperative. The very beginning of the Puthetique Sonata gesture. It experiences during the course of the piece neither to its past nor to is and the development self-contained, is an is a it linked action. Alone, this gesture, reminiscent of an idealized march, engenders pathos by means of the power states it on the changing becomes the symbol of the brings to bear of a soul in conflict.

Quasi Publishers clamored for his works. But his reputation depended for the most part on his chamber music and solo piano works. He had written no operas, no oratorios; the few symphonic or concert pieces he had written were not yet impressive. Mozart and Haydn continued to reign as masters of the orchestral world and the lyric stage. There, also, Beethoven was to make his presence moon- light" the nick- name —whence the Moonlight Sonata. Above left, a 1901 lithograph, The Moonlight Sonata; opposite, Beethoven Playing the Moonlight Sonata for Giulietta Guicciardi.

Yht» W« i o * vtw O y -aj f ? THE PATH TO ISOLATION 36 The young harpsichordist from Bonn had become an He had the support of a handful of aristocratic patrons who were more at his service than he at theirs. These were the happiest years of his life. experienced musician. js&zftii He had conquered Vienna, and now he dreamed of enlarging his empire. Prague and Berlin acclaimed him, awe of the violence and in originality of his playing, as well as the strangeness of his ideas. But he never abandoned himself to the seductions of pure virtuosity.

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