Today we invite you and your students to discover a new educational website — Beethoven, Independent Man — an idea brought to life by Nancy Faber with help from friend and colleague Marienne Uszler, and Piano Adventures European editor and clinician, David Andruss.
Young music students, their teachers, and music lovers of all ages will enjoy this fascinating online adventure through Beethoven’s life. Colorful pictures, portraits, videos, and supporting documents from the archives of the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn complement listening activities and performances by Randall Faber, David Andruss, and others.
The website is set up as a series of short, illustrated stories in picture-book format that follow Beethoven’s life from boyhood to adult. Corresponding “Search & Discover” sections are full of activities for discovering more about Beethoven in an online setting: a type of guided tour through everything the vast Internet has to offer. The first Story was published September 4th. Stories 2 through 8 will follow, one every two weeks, culminating with Story 8 just one week before Beethoven’s 250th birthday.
The goal of this unique site is to excite young minds for Beethoven’s music as well as to let users experience the composer in a very personal way. For example, did Beethoven use pencils or only ink and quills? What made the clothes he wore different from composers like Mozart or Haydn? Why was Napoleon important to the young Beethoven but despised by him just a few years later? How did this affect his music? What was his first published composition? How old was he when he wrote it? Why didn’t he dedicate his first Opus to Haydn, his teacher? This and many other unexpected questions are uncovered in this unique and immersive online learning experience.
Many thanks to Nancy and Randall Faber, whose vision and support have made this project possible. This free teacher resource is now available for individual or group instruction, and can be shared with students in online media libraries and learning management systems. We invite you to read the stories here: beethoven.pianoadventures.com, and sign up to receive notifications when new stories are released every two weeks.