For Elise – Beethoven’s Besteller


It’s one of the most popular pieces of classical music in the world. A catchy tune that won’t let go. It’s in every stack of piano music. It’s been used in music scores for Hollywood films like “Rosemarys Baby” or “Inglorious Basterds”. “For Elise” can be heard tinkling from mobile ringtones, telephone waiting loops, Fabergé eggs and toy pianos. The American rapper Nas based his hit “I can” on the melody of “For Elise”. How could this piece of music, just 928 notes in length, ever achieve such international distribution and celebrity? Within this documentary famous Pianists such as Alice Sara Ott, Gabriela Montero, Kit Armstrong, Richard Clayderman, composer Detlev Glanert and others give their interpretations of “For Elise”. The film sets off in search of the meaning and merit of “For Elise”. Prominent classical music experts and historians in Berlin, Vienna and Bonn work out the secrets of the magic that this best known and most frequently played of Beethoven’s pieces sparks anew in every generation around the world.

Additional Info

  • No: 8733
  • Artists: Alice Sara Ott, Gabriela Montero, Kit Armstrong, Richard Clayderman, Detlev Glanert
  • Production year: 2012
  • Run time: 00:52:00
  • Director: A film by Axel Brüggemann and Axel Fuhrmann
  • Producers: DokFabrik, WDR
  • Format: HDTV 16:9
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