Beethoven and Mahler

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Beethoven and Mahler This report examines the history and musical ability of Ludwig Van Beethoven with a comparison to another great composer Gustav Mahler. The purpose of this report is to provide a brief summary of Ludwig Van Beethoven’s life and compare and contrast Beethoven’s musical work and life struggles to another great composer Gustav Mahler, who attempted to improve Beethoven’s work in the late 19th century and early 20th century. Gustav Mahler and Beethoven were great composers of different times in the 19th century. Gustav Mahler idealized Beethoven and his musical accomplishments. To understand the musical compositions and the inspirations of Beethoven’s and Mahler’s “improved” masterpieces this report will provide (1) a brief biography of Ludwig Van Beethoven, (2) a brief overview of Beethoven’s musical career, (3) inspirations and beginning works of Mahler, (4) comparison of Beethoven’s and Mahler’s music and life struggles, and (5) a conclusion summarizing the report. TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION Brief Biography of Ludwig Van Beethoven Ludwig Van Beethoven was a German Composer, considered one of the greatest musicians of all time. Having begun his career as an outstanding improviser at the piano and composer of piano music, Beethoven went on to compose string quartets and other kinds of chamber music, songs, two masses, an opera, and nine symphonies. Beethoven was born in Bonn. His father’s harsh discipline and alcoholism made his childhood and adolescence difficult. At age 18, after his mother’s death, Beethoven placed himself at the head of the family, taking responsibility for h... ... middle of paper ... ...e representative of Mahler’s feelings from a love letter he had written at the time. CONCLUSION All of his works for the piano could be considered revolutionary at the time. His early piano sonatas often had a forceful, bold quality, which inevitably led to the slower movements of Beethoven’s life. Beethoven’s drive and passion for his work and performances were fueled for his desire to be remembered for centuries past his time. The fact that Beethoven realized his artistic ambitions in spite of his hearing impairment added to the fascination and inspiration of his life for us as the students to his incredible life and music left behind. Beethoven’s artistic achievements generated a long shadow over the 19th century and 20th century, having set a standard against which today’s composers measure their work.

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