Bagatelle a-Moll WoO 59 ("Für Elise") 03:33 Min. Verfügbar bis 30.12.2099

For Elise

Ludwig van Beethoven:
Bagatelle in A minor, WoO 59 ("For Elise")

Michael Gees, piano
Recording date: 28.01.2001

Possibly the most famous work of piano music on the planet. Für Elise from Ludwig van Beethoven registers 1,6 million hits on Google. Für Elise is everywhere: piano lessons, ringtones, elevators.

Yet there is still some mystery revolving around Beethoven’s Für Elise. Nobody ever found out who that Elise really was. Some people suggest it was a brief affair. Others believe "Elise" is short for "Therese". Whatever it may be, Beethoven’s relationship status could be classified as: It’s complicated!

Für Elise is a so-called bagatelle. That sounds as if Beethoven was penning this 3 minute smash hit rather easily and quickly. In fact he was working – on and off – for several years on this music.

By the way, Für Elise is also a rondo. That means that the music starts with one theme, followed by another theme, then the first again, then something else, and in in the end the first theme resurfaces.

The melody of Für Elise, as catchy as it is, is actually rather tricky. Perfect for confusing us with its unique rhythm. Just listen closely …