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Jessica Duchen
Thursday 15th October 2009
Beethoven didn't write Für Elise

Back from France to discover some news that might, um, set the musical world on fire: new research shows that 'Für Elise' may not have been composed by Beethoven, or at least not entirely. Milan's Corriere della Sera carries the story that Italian musicologist Luca Chiantore has researched the topic for eight years and has now presented at the University of Barcelona a case in favour of one Ludwig Nohl.

Apparently Nohl, a young musicologist, discovered Beethoven's notes for the piece in 1865 and used them to construct the work, which was consequently only published some 40 years after LvB's death. Info in English at this forum.

Fancy having to live with 'Für Elise' for eight years... I'm not going to post a Youtube video of the work, because no doubt it will be coming soon to a mobile phone near you. Will Nohl's descendents apply for backdated royalties, I wonder?


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Jessica Duchen
October 16th, 2009
7:10 AM
Possibly Fur Therese! It seems that LvB's handwriting was so bad that the sketched-out title might have been misread...

Brent Straughan
October 15th, 2009
12:10 PM
Fur whom then?

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About Jessica Duchen

Jessica Duchen is a music journalist and the author of four novels, two biographies and several stage works. She writes regularly for The Independent and BBC Music Magazine. Her latest novel, Songs of Triumphant Love, is published by Hodder.

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