Today’s piece is one of those that piano students often try to learn on their own – or a friend will teach them the first 9 notes. It’s usually played too fast and, often in the wrong octave, or the first couple notes are repeated too many times.
This is one of two pieces that are so often played incorrectly that they have the distinction of being banned from competition in Northern Virginia Piano Teacher competitions.
Stay tuned for the other one!
Für Elise was not published during Beethoven’s lifetime, having been discovered by Ludwig Nohl 40 years after the composer’s death. The identity of “Elise” is unknown.
The very basic melody:
The actual beginning is a little more involved.
And, there’s more!
If you’d like to learn to play this piece correctly, find the sheet music at IMSLP, Beethoven: Exploring His Life and Music, and countless compilations of classical music available at the O’Connor Music Studio.
By Valentina Lisitsa:
The Big Piano at FAO Schwartz in NYC:
The Mystery Behind Für Elise:
Youtube has many, many more versions. Beethoven would probably go nuts!
• 1886 ~ Robert Herberigs, Flemish Composer and writer
• 1898 ~ Paul Muller-Zurich, Composer
• 1902 ~ Guy (Gaetano) Lombardo, Canadian-born American bandleader with The Royal Canadians: “The most beautiful music this side of heaven.”
• 1904 ~ Balis Dvarionas, Composer
• 1905 ~ Taneli Kuusisto, Composer
• 1910 ~ Edwin Gerschefski, Composer
• 1910 ~ Father’s Day was observed for the first time at Spokane, Wash., at the request of the the local YMCA and the Spokane Ministerial Association to earmark a Sunday to “honor thy father.” The idea originated in the mind of a Ms. John Bruce Dodd, a local housewife who was inspired by her admiration for the great job her father, William Smart, had done in raising his 6 children after his wife’s untimely and early death.
• 1912 ~ Jerry Jerome, American saxophonist
• 1913 ~ Sergey Ivanovich Taneyev, Russian Composer, died at the age of 58
• 1926 ~ DeFord Bailey was the first black to perform on Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry
• 1927 ~ Karel Kupka, Composer
• 1930 ~ Jul Levi, Composer
• 1932 ~ First concert performed in San Francisco’s Stern Grove
• 1936 ~ Tommy DeVito, Singer with The Four Seasons
• 1939 ~ Al Wilson, Musician, drummer, singer with Show and Tell
• 1940 ~ Maurice Jaubert, Composer, died at the age of 40
• 1942 ~ Spanky (Elaine) McFarlane, Singer with Spanky and Our Gang
• 1943 ~ Shiek Of Araby by Spike Jones & City Slickers peaked at #19
• 1951 ~ Ann Wilson, Singer with Heart
• 1953 ~ Larry Dunn, Musician, keyboards with Earth, Wind & Fire
• 1956 ~ Doug Stone, Singer
• 1960 ~ Loretta Lynn recorded Honky Tonk Girl
• 1961 ~ Little Egypt (Ying-Yang) by Coasters peaked at #23
• 1962 ~ Paula Abdul, Singer
• 1965 ~ I Can’t Help Myself, by The Four Tops, topped the pop and R&B charts. The Tops, who had no personnel changes in their more than 35 years together were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1990.
• 1966 ~ Marjan Kozina, Composer, died at the age of 59
• 1984 ~ Wladimir Rudolfovich Vogel, Composer, died at the age of 88
• 1988 ~ Zdenek Blazek, Composer, died at the age of 83
• 1994 ~ “She Loves Me” closed at Atkinson Theater New York City after 294 performances
• 1994 ~ “Twilight – Los Angeles 1992” closed at Cort New York City after 72 performances
• 1995 ~ Murray Dickie, Opera singer/director, died at the age of 71
• 1996 ~ Alan Ande Anderson, Opera director, died at the age of 78
• 1996 ~ Vivian Ellis, Composer, died at the age of 91
• 1997 ~ Bobby Helms, singer (Jingle Bell Rock), died at the age of 63
• 1997 ~ “Forever Tango!” opened at Walter Kerr Theater New York City