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Beethoven Beethoven was born in Bonn Germany in 1770 to Johann van Beethoven and his wife Maria Magdalena He took his first music lessons from his father who was tenor in the choir of the archbishop-elector of Cologne His father was an unstable yet ambitious man whose excessive drinking rough temper and anxiety surprisingly did not diminish Beethovens love for music He studied and performed with great success despite becoming the breadwinner of his household by the time he was 18 years old His fathers increasingly serious alcohol problem and the earlier death of his grandfather in 1773 sent his family into deepening poverty At first Beethoven made little impact on the musical society despite his fathers hopes When he turned 11 he left school and became an assistant organist to Christian Gottlob Neefe at the court of Bonn learning from him and other musicians In 1783 he became the continuo player for the Bonn opera and accompanied their rehearsals on keyboard In 1787 he was sent to Vienna to take further lessons from Mozart Two months later however he was called back to Bonn by the death of his mother He started to play the viola in the Opera Orchestra in 1789 while also teaching in composing He met Haydn in 1790 who agreed to teach him in Vienna and Beethoven then moved to Vienna permanently He received financial support from Prince Karl Lichnowsky to whom he dedicated his Piano Sonata in C minor better known as The Pathtique He performed publicly in Vienna in 1795 for the first time and published his Op 1 and Op 2 piano sonatas His works are traditionally divided into three periods The first is called the Viennese Classical the second is the Heroic and the third is Late Beethoven In the first period his individuality and style gradually developed as he used many methods from Haydn including the use of silence He composed mainly for
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