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CLASSICAL  July 2001

CLASSICAL July 2001

Subject:

Re: Ferdinand Ries

From:

Joyce Maier <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 10 Jul 2001 09:06:23 +0200

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Sandra Beane wondered:

>Does anyone know anything about this composer....in particular the Kreutzer
>Sonata Quintet? when it was written and the circumstances.  To my knowledge
>it was arranged by Ferdinand Ries.  Not by Beethoven.  The only thing I can
>find is that Ferdinand Ries corrosponded with Beethoven's publisher in
>reguards to the Sonata for violin.  THank you guys for your help.

Ries, Ferdinand, 1784-1838.  German composer and pianist, pupil of
Beethoven.  According to Beethoven he imitated his teacher a bit too much,
to which I agree.  I happen to know some of Ries's compositions.  Not bad,
but far from original.  Ries's father, Franz, had been Beethoven's teacher
in Bonn, when the youngster tried to the master the violin.  Later on Franz
decided to send his son to his former pupil.  Ferdinand lived in Vienna for
some years and got quite a lot of lessons from Beethoven.  He also was his
secretary and helped him with his dealings with publishers.  Ries left
Vienna, travelled through half Europe and finally settled down in London.
During his last decade Beethoven corresponded with his former pupil and
reading this correspondence it's obvious that they had become friends,
notwithstanding Beethoven's criticism and notwithstanding some quarrels.
Ries married a very attractive English woman and often Beethoven sends her
his kindest regards, even his kisses.  Obviously he had learned more about
her beauty!  After Beethoven's death Ries published his memoirs, together
with one of Beethoven's other friends from his youth:  Franz Wegeler.  This
booklet is a very important source of information about Beethoven.  It was
republished some years ago and probably still available, I guess.  Last
month I was in Vienna for some Beethoven research and there I saw this
republication on a shelf in one of Viennese many libraries.  The title
of the book is "Biographische Notizen uber Ludwig van Beethoven." First
publication 1838, first republication 1906 (edited by Kalischer), second
republication? I forgot to check the year, since I already possess it, so
I was not particularly interested.  As for the arrangement of the Kreutzer
sonata:  I once heard it and I liked it very, very much.  Ries at his best,
I suppose.  However, as far as I know the experts are not yet sure about
the identity of the one who composed the arrangement, though Ries seems
very likely indeed.

Joyce Maier (mail to: [log in to unmask] or [log in to unmask])
www.ademu.com/Beethoven

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