Beethoven

The Life of Schubert

By Christopher H. Gibbs

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"Franz Schubert's tragically short life was lived in one of Europe's most richly musical cities: a Vienna that worshipped Beethoven and where Rossini and Paganini drew crowds. Christopher Gibbs considers how and what Schubert composed, taking a fresh look at this misunderstood composer, particularly the unfolding of his professional career, his relationship to Beethoven, the growth of his reputation and public image and his darker side of drinking, depression and sexual ambiguity. This searching and sympathetic biography questions the customary sentimental clichés and the recent revisionist views concerning this elusive genius."

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Fidelio

By Ludwig van Beethoven

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Fidelio is an opera in two acts set in 18th-century near Seville by Ludvig van Beethoven. It is Beethoven's only opera. The German libretto is by Joseph Sonnleithner from the French of Jean-Nicolas Bouilly. The opera tells how Leonore, disguised as a prison guard named "Fidelio," rescues her husband Florestan from death in a political prison. For further information go here. This is an opera suggested for a seasoned, not novice, listener. CD format.

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Beethoven: The Composer as Hero

By Philippe A. Autexier

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To be a musician and to be deaf: that alone would have made Beethoven a tragic hero. But his heroic stature goes beyond the pathos of his condition. Beethoven left his mark in his magnificent sonatas, symphonies, and his chamber music--among the most beautiful ever written. Set against the stormy background of European political upheaval, the intellectual ferment of Vienna, and the love affairs, friendships, and quarrels of his private life, here is the story of Beethoven, the father of Romantic music.

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