Monday, October 18, 2010

10/18 Beethoven and Haydn on a street...
From the Wiener Allgemeine Musik-Zeitung (No. 39, 1846) on Beethoven's meeting with Haydn shortly after the premiere of the Creatures of Prometheus:

It has long been known, and especially proven by certain remarks by Beethoven against his equally artistic colleague Goethe, that Beethoven was very much aware of his position in the world of music, and on certain occasions knew how to take advantage of it, even if it meant running the risk of being harshly judged or misunderstood by lay persons .... When in 1801 Beethoven had written the music to the ballet "The Creatures of Prometheus", he encountered his former teacher, the great Joseph Haydn, who immediately stopped him and said, ‘Now, yesterday I heard your ballet and it pleased me very much.’ Beethoven thereupon answered, ‘Oh, my dear Papa, you are very kind, but it is a long way from being a “Creation”.’ Haydn, surprised and almost offended by this answer, said after a short silence, ‘That is true, it is not yet a “Creation” and I very much doubt whether it will ever succeed in being one.’ Whereupon each of them, somewhat dumbfounded, took leave of the other.

I love little stories like these where the father of the symphony and string quartet (Papa Haydn) meets the father of modern music (B) and they basically trip over each other like normal humans....

This past week or so my posts have been a little on the light side because I've been traveling in Vienna tracking down B.s homes and haunts!  Well, I just got back literally hours ago and hope to make a full report - but it will be a few days since I have to sort out about 1.5 gigs of datafiles...

Ringing B. at his apt on the Molker Bastei in Vienna


  1. Well Hello Ed,
    Glad you enjoyed Vienna. I'm living there from 8/1/11 to 8/2/12!! Sorry to learn that you've caught a cold. I don't contribute to the Beethoven Reference Site any more - I asked Chris and Peter to deactivate my account - because of other commitments, and the things which need to be done in the period leading up to our leaving the country. This site of yours is terrific!! Keep up the good work. Sorry you won't be able to discuss movies with me now on the BRS!! Cheers, Bonn1827

  2. PS: My email is if you want to discuss Vienna, Ed. Bonn1827/Sue