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Old 12-16-2005, 07:44 AM   #1
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Default Beethoven's birthday

David Rakowski reminds us that today is Beethoven’s 235th birthday. Reminded of that, what sprang instantly into my mind was a pianist friend in college. He was studying the bagatelles (Op. 26), and I used to study while he played on a huge old grand piano.

To this day, I think of the bagatelles when I think of Beethoven, even though I have since come to love Symphony No. 7 and the quartets, particularly the later ones (most of his chamber music, in fact). (And, yes, of course, Symphony No. 9.)

Our local public radio station (WSHU) is playing wall-to-wall Beethoven today. Wonder if they will get to any of the bagatelles. (I would be content even with the Op. 19 set.)

During the 60s and 70s I went through a period of despising Beethoven. Not sure why — too forceful, maybe? But that passed eventually. Happy birthday, old boy!

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