Business – Beethoven Was First in Business and Composition. Here was Beethoven’s formula for success with his 9th symphony. He created a tremendous demand for it. He knew how important backing and funding were. Beethoven literally valued a penny. Others may have ascribed to him: The “Rondo alla ingharese quasi un capriccio” in G major, Op. 129 (Italian: “Rondo in the Hungarian [i.e. gypsy] style, almost a caprice”), is a piano rondo by Ludwig van Beethoven. It is better known by the title Rage Over a Lost Penny. Talk about a penny pincher. Here is a brief summary of Beethoven’s business method:
- Create a demand for a product.
- Then, withold it.
- Spread the word.
- Then continue to hold it back from the market.
- Watch the offers for our product come in.
- Then let it out to the highest bidder.
THE BUSINESS OF WRITING THE 9TH SYMPHONY
My primary source for the following is Music, by Frederic V. Grunfeld. Newsweek Books, NY, 1974. The 9th was completed toward the end of 1823. This was after 5 years of off and on work. For most of this time, Viennese friends were collecting a petition. They were thrilled about the project. Those who signed it called themselves “ardent admirers.” In the petition they pleaded not to keep them waiting for his latest symphony. The letter stated that Austria wished to claim him as their own, He was born in Germany. Among those who signed were:
- Leading music publishers.
- Instrument makers.
- Officials from the imperial court.
- A dozen prominent aristocrats.
- The director of the royal court theaters.
Beehoven kept them all waiting. They knew it would be a choral symphony. It was in part based on Friedrich Schiller’s Ode to Joy. It celebrated the brotherhood of man. Schiller’s words translate: “all men will become brothers beneath joy’s gentle wing.” So what is my advice? Listen to Beethoven’s music. Study not only his music, but Beethoven the man. Any day now, look for for the new product posting on DSOworks.com of The Oquaga Spirit Speaks. It is now 120 pages of poetry and color pictures. All about the fun life in the Catskill Mountains. It features Oquaga Lake. The words were spoken by an Indian spirit while I was on hikes in nature.