Composer of the Month


Ludwig van Beethoven


Read about Beethoven’s biography here. (Or read the biography in your Piano Explorer Magazine!)

See if you can see the difference between Beethoven’s earlier works and his later works.

Listen for the repeated rhythm in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5, first movement. These are probably the most famous 4 notes in all of classical music. During World War II the BBC used it to open broadcasts – because the three short and one long note rhythm matched the Morse code pattern for V (Victory).


Ludwig van Beethoven


Beethoven’s first piece: Variations on a March by Ernst Dressler

 Für Elise

Moonlight Sonata

Symphony #5, 1st movement. Listen for the famous rhythm.

Symphony #6, (Pastoral)

Mvt. 1: Awakening of pleasant feelings upon arriving the country-Allegro ma non troppo
Mvt. 2: Scene at the Brook-Andante molto mosso
Mvt. 3: Peasant’s Merrymaking-Allegro
Mvt. 4: The Storm-Allegro
Mvt. 5: Shepherd’s Hymn after the Storm-Allegretto


Minuet in G played on violin


Click here to hear how to pronounce Beethoven’s name.

Beethoven’s Music during his
Early, Middle and Late Periods

Early: Symphony #1, 1st movement

Early: Sonata in C Major op. 2, #3

Middle: Symphony #3, 1st movement

Middle: Sonata in C Minor,  Pathetique op. 13

Late: Symphony #9, mvt 4  Ode to Joy, listen for the famous melody 3 minutes in.

Late: Sonata in E Major,  op. 109


Besides the advanced Sonatas for Piano Beethoven wrote several smaller pieces that early intermediate students can master.  These include Sonatina in G major, Sonatina in F major, Ecossaise in G major, Ecoissase in E flat major, Country Dances, Geran Dances, and Bagatelles, Op. 119.