Selecting the most beautiful piece of music from Germany seems an impossible task, and raises innumerable issues. First of all, what constitutes "German?" Is it German-speaking composers, or those born in, or who lived in, an area we now call Germany? (Germany wasn't created as a single state until the late 19th century). Secondly, there are so MANY composers and compositions that could be considered among the best of all time: Beethoven, Bach, Brahms, Wagner, Haydn--not to mention Mozart, who some consider German but was born in Salzburg and spent most of life there and in Vienna. Thirdly, considering German composers raises the tricky question of what musical forms are we considering as a "piece of music?" Is it a symphony? A movement of a symphony? A sonata or a concerto? An opera--or an aria from an opera?
I will leave all of these questions open to discussion here on this blog, and invite your nominations for the best piece of music by a German composer.
Our first nomination, however, comes from my 18-month old granddaughter Lizzy, via her mother Melanie, who emailed me that "Lizzy would like to submit this for Germany. "She listens to it a dozen times a day," Melanie adds. Maybe this particular rendition of the "Ode to Joy" is not the very best, but it does speak to the excellent taste of my descendants, says the proud grandfather.
I would second Lizzy's nomination. It is definitely German. It is definitely beautiful. And it is "a piece" of the final movement of Beethoven's last (9th) symphony.
An Interactive Site to Identify the Most Beautiful Musical Compositions of Each Country
Welcome music lovers! Please join the discussion, vote, and offer suggestions for what you think are the most beautiful musical compositions of each country in the world. See my initial posting for the rules of the game. Then click on the country label (on the right side) and use "Comment" to offer your thoughts, votes or suggestions about the music of that country. To suggest candidate compositions, please provide the title and composer of the piece and, if possible, a link to an audio or video sample of the music. Once a number of nominations are received for a country, I will create a "poll" for people to vote on their favorite