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It is not often that composers have had so profound an impact on their time as Richard Wagner His operas and artistic philosophy influenced not only musicians but also poets painters and playwright He was worldly renowned for his operas and compositions and although the public both liked and disliked his works noone can deny their greatness Wilhelm Richard Wagner was born in Leipzig on May 22 1813 He was born into a theatrical family He was the ninth child of Carl Friedrich Wagner a police actuary and Johanna Rosine Wagner There is some discrepancy as to who his real father is He was the son either of the police actuary Friedrich Wagner who died soon after his birth or of his mothers friend the painter actor and poet Ludwig Geyer whom she married in August 1814 In 1820 Wagner began his schooling near Dresden in Pastor Wetzels school Through Geyers literary interests he became drawn to towards Classical and Shakespearean Drama Soon Wagner discovered the world of Music and Beethoven in particular At 15 he was overwhelmed by Beethovens music and decided to become a composer despite his minimal amount of musical education He taught himself by studying the scores and had almost four years of formal training in music theory but he never mastered an instrument By 15 he had already written a play and at 16 his first compositions In Leipzig Wagners first instruction in composition was taken in 1828 to1831 with Christian Muller with whom he abundantly wrote his overtures He then continued his lessons in composition with the theorist and composer Christian Theodore Weinlig who refused all payment In March 1832 a performance with the C major overture by the Musikverein Euterpe was the beginning of Wagners career as a conductor In 1832 he became chorus master oft he Wuzerburg theater and wrote text and music of his first opera Die Feen which was viewed as rather exceptional
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